MARBLEHEAD-- Although his team dropped a heartbreaking 35-33 game to Marblehead at Piper Field Friday night, Gloucester head coach Tony Zerilli could only praise the fight his team showed.
Trailing 28-7 early in the third quarter and mounting next to no offense, it appeared that the unbeaten Magicians were on their way to another rout. But Gloucester was not going down without a fight, a big fight.
The Fishermen outscored Marblehead 26-7 over the final 21 minutes of play and got the ball back with just over a minute to play and a chance to win, but ran out of time.
“We’re a team that fights,” Zerilli said. “We fight right to the end, I think we’ve showed the last two weeks that there’s no quit in Fishermen football. We played hard until the last minute, it was a close game but we fell just short.”
It appeared that Marblehead (5-0) put the game out of reach on its opening drive of the second half marching 76 yards in eight plays culminating with a Brooks Tyrrell 19 yard touchdown run. But Gloucester (3-2) didn’t panic, it kept fighting, it made adjustments, and it started to see some holes.
Gloucester got its fullback trap going in the second half as fullback Jordan Pallazola had more than 150 yards in the final 22 minutes alone with Jon Good adding 50.
The Fishermen used the fullback trap and a well timed 23 yard reverse from Connor Harris to get the score to 28-13, the drive ending with a Pallazola one yard run.
After forcing a turnover on downs Pallazola raced 73 yards down to the Magicians four yard line and would punch it in from the one two plays later and all of a sudden it was a game at 28-19.
“We manned up and started blocking better,” Zerilli said. “We told them at halftime the running backs need to block better, the line needs to block for the backs better and they responded.”