Wednesday, December 4, 2013
By MARK JEANNERET Special to the Telegram
SACO - Eric Christensen tossed two touchdown passes and ran for another as Thornton Academy beat Massabesic 42-14 in a Western Class A football game Saturday.
Nick Kenney of Thornton Academy is upended by Casey Nava of Massabesic during the first half of unbeaten Thornton’s 42-14 victory at Saco.
Photos by Derek Davis/Staff Photographer
Casey Nava, filling in at quarterback for Massabesic, loses the ball Saturday while tackled by Jack Grondlin of Thornton in the first half.
Andrew Libby, Alex Rizeakos and Dylan Morton added rushing touchdowns for the Trojans (4-0).
"We've got a weapon everywhere on the field," said Christensen. "It's my job to give them the ball and see what they can do."
Christensen got the offense rolling shortly after Cody Lynn picked off a Casey Nava pass to give the Trojans the ball on the Mustangs' 37. Three plays later Christensen broke off a 21-yard run to give Thornton a 7-0 lead.
The Mustangs answered on the next series when Nava took off for a 57-yard run to make it 7-7.
Nava got the quarterback start for the Mustangs (2-2) in place of Jake Desrochers, who was on the sidelines in his jersey but without pads. According to Coach John Morin, Desrochers suffered a non-football injury during the week that will require surgery Monday. Desrochers' status for the rest of the season is unknown.
Nava, usually the fullback, rushed 18 times for 194 yards and passed for another 92.
Thornton regained the lead on the final play of the first quarter when Christensen found Libby wide open for a 47-yard touchdown reception.
But the Mustangs answered immediately again. Nava connected with Dylan Crommett on an 80-yard catch and run to make it 14-14.
"I thought in the first half we gave up a couple of big plays," said Thornton Coach Kevin Kezal. "I think we have to improve defensively. I think we're still giving up way too many big plays. That's kind of been our Achilles' heel all year."
The Trojans took control late in the half by scoring on back-to-back possessions.
Libby gave Thornton a 21-14 lead when he scored on a 10-yard run to complete a 60-yard drive.
The Thornton defense followed by forcing the Mustangs into a three-and-out for the first time, resulting in a Trojans drive starting on the Massabesic 37. Three plays later, Rizeakos ran in from 6 yards to make it a 28-14 game.
The Trojans' defenders were tested again at the end of the half when Nava ignited a threat with a 32-yard gainer on a third-and-21 situation.
The Mustangs drove to the Trojans' 11 before a personal foul led to a failed 40-yard field-goal attempt by Tyler Bear to end the half.
The Mustangs were stymied again to begin the third quarter after they were turned away by the Trojans on a fourth-and-goal from the 3.
"We left points on the board to end the first half and we had field position in the red zone twice in the third quarter and didn't score," said Morin.
"If we turn those into points it's a different game. We were in position to pull even but we did not get that done."
A 34-yard touchdown reception by Dakota Tarbox of the Trojans to begin the fourth quarter and a 41-yard run by Morton completed the scoring.