It looked like the Lynn Classical football team was finally going to exercise it’s demons on October 26, 2007 in a week 8 football clash against Gloucester.
The Rams had been defeated by the Fishermen multiple times in dramatic fashion over the years, but entering the fourth quarter with a 22-6 lead at home, Classical looked poised to break through.
Instead it was just more heartbreak for the Rams as the Fishermen finished the final seven minutes of play with 20 unanswered points en route to a dramatic 26-22 win at Manning Field.
The 2007 Week 8 matchup is the only non-playoff game in the Nights to Remember series, but the game certainly had playoff consequences as the winner would essentially move on to the playoffs and the loser would see its season end on Thanksgiving Day.
Gloucester would go on to win the Division 2A Super Bowl and finish the year with a 13-0 record. The Fishermen won their two playoff games by a combined score of 80-0. In hindsight, the Week 8 battle was essentially the Division 2A Super Bowl.
Classical was in control and had the lead for the majority of the contest. From the 2:10 mark in the first quarter until the 7:16 mark of the fourth quarter Lynn Classical not only had the lead, it put up 22 unanswered points.
The Fishermen went up 6-0 early on a 38 yard touchdown run from Anthony Enderle, who powered the offense that night with 180 yards rushing on 14 carries.
Classical, however, answered back on the next drive. Quivari Jackson finished off the 14 play drive with a 25 yard touchdown reception from quarterback Alex Watler. A two point conversion made it 8-6 Rams.
Following a scoreless second quarter Lynn Classical tacked on another score in the third when Tony Johnson scooped up a Gloucester fumble and raced 51 yards for a touchdown. Eight minutes later Cameron Smith scored from three yards out to make it 22-6, a lead that appeared safe.
Gloucester did not answer back until there was 7:16 to play in the game when Enderle raced 42 yards for a score to cut the Lynn Classical lead to 22-12.
The Fishermen really seized momentum with 2:43 left in the game. That’s when junior quarterback Rick Gallant hit junior split end Dylan Maki for his first reception of the season, a 25 yard touchdown pass to cut the Rams lead to 22-20.
Gloucester certainly had the momentum but it still faced an uphill battle. Classical was getting the ball back and the clock was really starting to work against the Fishermen.
On their ensuing drive the Rams didn’t get very far. Gloucester had forced them into a fourth-and-two situation from the Gloucester 49 yard line. Rams head coach Matt Durgin was faced with a huge decision. Does he punt the ball and make Gloucester drive the length of the field in under two minutes? Or does he gamble and go for the first down that would ultimately clinch a victory and a playoff spot for Lynn Classical? Durgin went with the latter and the Fishermen responded by stuffing Jackson on a run at the line of scrimmage to take over at their own 49 yard line needing a score to win the game. ”After the touchdown pass, I thought Gloucester grabbed some momentum,” Durgin said. “We went for the big first down and we wanted to just keep the ball away from Gloucester’s offense. I told the kids that we were playing to win, not survive, and Gloucester was able to stop us. Hats off to them.”
Gloucester’s offense proved just why Durgin did not want it to see the field again as it marched down the field for the winning score.
It took two long runs from Enderle to get Gloucester down to the two yard line and Andrew Fulford, the school’s all time touchdown leader, scored on the very next play to make it 26-22 and secure one of the more dramatic victories in the history of the Gloucester Lynn Classical rivalry.
The win also kick started the most successful run in Gloucester football history. Gloucester not only went on to win the 2007 Division 2A Super Bowl, it made three more trips to the big dance in the next three years taking home titles in 2009 and 2010.
In Gloucester’s successful run, however, that October night in 2007 remains the most miraculous win of the era.