READING, Mass. -- Reading won, 42-6. Tewksbury did score to avoid the shutout, but with no time left on the clock.
The referees waved their arms like air traffic controllers to signal the end of the game, denying the Redmen the opportunity to go for the extra point, because it would not matter that they lost by only 34 points as opposed to 36. In the end, the fact remained that Reading will now have a chance to repay Mansfield for their 2010 Super Bowl loss on Saturday.
“It was a great team win, we were clicking on all cyclinders from the beginning of the game,” Reading quarterback Drew Belcher said.
Belcher ended the game with four rushing touchdowns as well as a passing touchdown. “From the O-line, to the backs, the receivers, everybody was clicking.”
He was right. The Rockets’ defense held Tewksbury to a three-and-out to start. Reading's opening drive, starting from their own 39, took 2:57 to complete for a touchdown. The drive was capped off by an 11-yard run by Belcher.
After another three-and-out by Tewksbury, it took Reading 1:34 seconds to find their way back to the scoreboard. The second touchdown came at the hands of the young man who collared a 31-yard pass on the first drive to bring Reading into the red zone and who also scored the extra point rush on said touchdown; Ryan Maney, senior wide receiver, took the end around all the way to the house, all 61 yards to bring the score to 15-0.
“It’s one of the things our coaches have tried,” said Maney, attributing his speed to the coaches giving him the opportunity to execute a long-way-around misdirection play with maximum efficiency. “I’m just trying to get to the edge and run as fast as I can.”
And he did. He outran everyone on his touchdown, including the Tewksbury secondary.
Last year, Tewksbury beat up on Reading, at home, in front of their fans, their band and their families. The players decided after the game that they would be able to seek redemption for their poor performance on playoff Tuesday of last year.
“They’ve been working hard for 364 days,” said Reading head coach John Fiore. “Last year, we got dominated a lot by Tewksbury and, this year, we made a commitment, for the long term.”
“Everyone knew what we had to do, so we stuck to our assignments,” said senior captain and two-way lineman Peter Fodera. We did what we had to do, play fast and physical and just take it to them every play.”
Tewksbury 0 0 0 6 – 6
Reading 15 14 13 0 – 42
R – Drew Belcher 1 run (Nicholas Stevens rush)
R – Stevens 61 run (Ritchey Karaba kick)
R – Belcher 1 run (Kick Failed)
R –Belcher 2 run (Liam Kenneally rush)
R – Kennelly 78 pass from Belcher (kick failed)
R – Belcher 1 run (Zachary Face kick)