The Gloucester football team could not keep the momentum going that it built last week at Boston Latin, where it picked up its first win of the season.
In the second week of consolation action, Gloucester hosted a Wilmington team that also missed out on the Division 4 playoffs, and dropped a sloppy, 31-12 contest at Newell Stadium.
With the loss, the Fishermen fall to 1-8 with one more consolation game before finishing up the season on Thanksgiving morning at home against Danvers.
“It was an ugly game,” Gloucester head coach Dan O’Connor said. “We didn’t play well, I lost my cool, the team lost their cool and that’s all on me. We let some tough circumstances bring us down.”
The Fishermen got off to a great start as Daylon Lark, who has been out since Week 4 with a concussion, took the opening kickoff 80-yards to the house for a 6-0 Gloucester lead.
“He’s such a dynamic player and we’re happy to have him back,” O’Connor said.
That lead, however, lasted only three plays as Wilmington quarterback Joseph McCauley hit receiver Marcello Misuraca on an out route and he cut up field and took it 61-yards for a Wilmington touchdown to give them a 7-6 lead just 93 seconds into the game.
The game tilted in Wilmington’s favor on its next drive. The Gloucester defense forced a punt, but were called for a very questionable running into the punter call on 4th and 6. As a result, the Wildcats went for it on 4th-and-1 and Bailey Smith not only converted, he raced 44-yards for a touchdown and a 14-6 lead for the Wildcats.
“The frustrating thing with the new federation rules is they aren’t called consistently week to week,” O’Connor said. “We had something similar happen to us last week with no call. This week it was a penalty, on both teams. But we didn’t respond after plays like that and we let them affect our play.”
Gloucester’s best chance to get back in the game came in the second quarter, with an impressive drive anchored by Lark and Evan Smith. The Fishermen marched all the way down to the Wilmington 10 before turning it over on downs.
The Fishermen had trouble containing Bailey Smith all night as he ran for 188 yards and a pair of touchdowns. He scored again for Wilmington late in the first half to make it 21-6 at the break.
The Wildcats put the game away in the third. Facing a 3rd-and-27 from the Fishermen 37, McCauley hit a wide open Tristan Ciampa for a 37-yard touchdown and a 28-6 Wilmington lead heading into the fourth.
Stephen Smolinsky added a 22-yard field goal and Frank DeSisto capped off the scoring with a 20-yard touchdown run for Gloucester to make it 31-12.
Gloucester’s next consolation opponent will be determined on Sunday.