By Jeff Kiesling
The Dover-Sherborn High School Raiders varsity football squad won a hard-fought game against the Watertown High School Raiders before a large home-crowd at Nora Searle Field last Friday night by the score of 28-14 in the first round of the MIAA Division 5 playoffs. D-S relied on three TD passes by quarterback Garrett Webb and a defensive shutout in the second half to get past a well-matched opponent on their way to the quarterfinals. With the win, the Raiders remained perfect on the season and pushed their record to 9-0.
Watertown took the opening kickoff at their own 35-yard line, but the Raiders defense held, and the visitors were forced to punt, giving D-S possession near their own 20-yard line. After they moved the ball to their own thirty-five, Webb hit a racing Emilio Cabey across the middle of the field, who took the ball down the right sideline and into the end-zone for a 65-yard score midway through the first period. The attempted PAT was blocked, and D-S settled for a 6-0 lead. However, Watertown responded by promptly driving the field to score and took the lead back (7-6) at the end of the first quarter.
Dover-Sherborn responded on their next possession when they scored on a 30-yard pass from Webb to Brian Olson midway through the second — but the attempt for a two-point conversion fell short, giving DS a 12 -7 lead with around four minutes remaining before halftime. Not to be outdone, the visitors responded with another quick score and led, 14-12, at the break.
The two squads held each other in check for much of the third quarter. That changed, however, when, facing third and nine from the opponent’s twenty-five-yard line, Webb hit Olson in the right side of the end-zone for another D-S score. With a successful two-point conversion, the hosts took the lead (for good) with the score 20-14 and time running down in the third.
At that point, the Dover-Sherborn running game took over and drove down the field to close out the third period. The Raiders scored early in the fourth on a Michael Polk run up the middle for a touchdown. Another successful two-point conversion would stake D-S to a 28-14 lead with ten minutes to play in the contest.
As it has often done this season, the Raiders defense locked down and prevented the opponent from getting back in the game; the D-S defense has allowed opposing offenses only 61 points this season, and has surrendered no more than two touchdowns in any game. They turned Watertown back after it had driven deep into home territory and knocked a hurried fourth-down pass by the visitors to the ground, where it fell incomplete.
The D-S offense took over with the opportunity to seal the game, and they ground the clock down to zero for a 28-14 final score.
On Friday, November 11, the eighth-seeded D-S travels to meet the No. 1 seed Hudson for a matchup of unbeatens in the state quarterfinals.
This story was generously contributed by a member of the Dover-Sherborn community. Hometown Weekly welcomes the submission of varsity sports photos and game stories to email@example.com.