By Jeff Kiesling
“Who’s got my back?”
“I got your back!”
“Who’s got my back?”
“I got your back!”
The Dover-Sherborn varsity football team formed a tight circle and their voices thundered as they jumped up and down in unison after taking the field last Friday for Senior Night prior to kick-off against the Millis High School Mohawks. The players and coaches have had each other’s backs all season and it showed once again as they took down another opponent in convincing fashion, 33-7, to push their unbeaten streak to seven games.
On Millis’ first possession, Raiders defensive end Dylan Rogers broke through the left side of the line and grabbed the Mohawks’ quarterback, which caused him to rush his pass attempt. The ball floated into the secondary, where Mekhi Robinson picked it off and returned it to the visitors’ 25-yard line. However, the Raiders offense sputtered, and they turned the ball over on downs. The Millis offense could do no better and they punted the ball back to the hosts, who took over near midfield.
On DS’ second series, the offense got hot in a hurry when Chris Kiesling grabbed a Garrett Webb pass in traffic for a 25-yard gain. On the next play, Michael Polk took a handoff up the middle and shook off multiple tacklers on his way to his first touchdown of the night. The Raiders kicking squad had a rare miscue and the Mohawks were able to deflect the extra-point attempt, making the score 6-0 with four minutes to go in the first quarter.
Dover-Sherborn’s defense remained stingy, and the Mohawks had to punt from deep in their own end on their next possession. The Raiders took over at near midfield and quickly went back to work. Webb threw a bullet to Brian Olson, who had broken across the middle on a crossing route and the sure-handed receiver rumbled down inside the 25-yard line. Two plays later Webb went back to Olson, who beat his defender in the right corner of the end-zone for an easy score. Ronan Richards nailed the extra-point making the score 13-0 at the end of the first quarter.
Millis was able to move the ball on its next possession and drove deep into DS territory, but they were unable to capitalize as Griffin Rosbottom intercepted the ball near the end-zone and returned it to the 15-yard line. The Raider offense picked up where it left off in the first quarter and continued to expose the secondary, keyed by a 35-yard toss from Webb to Kiesling, and then a pass across the middle to Olson, who carried defenders on his back before going down inside the five-yard line. The drive was capped when Webb hit Polk out of the backfield on the right side for the back’s second score of the game. By halftime, the Raiders had jumped out to a commanding 20-0 lead —and they were well on their way to extending their unbeaten streak.
Dover-Sherborn showed off a few new offensive wrinkles in the third quarter. They moved the ball quickly down the field on a well-designed and well-executed play when Webb pitched the ball to Henry Moore, who ran to his left and then pulled up and uncorked a 45-yard bomb to Kiesling, who had gotten behind the defense on the left sideline. Two plays later, Moore took a handoff on a counter play and weaved his way thorough traffic on the left side, going untouched into the end-zone. With the successful extra-point DS extended its lead to 27-0 at the midpoint of the third quarter.
Millis was able to get on the board with a 60-yard touchdown run at the end of third quarter to make the score 27-7, but they would not score again.
Ronan Richards added an exclamation point to the Raiders’ performance when he pinned the Mohawks inside their own 5-yard line with a terrific punt (which was downed by Will Dummer), and then scored on a 22-yard quarterback keeper up the middle in the final period.
With the win the Raiders improved to 7-0 overall and 4-0 in the TVL Small on the season. They visit Norton on Friday, October 28, for a 7:00 p.m. kick-off, and end their regular season at Medfield High School on Thursday, November 24, at 10:00 a.m., for their annual Thanksgiving-day match-up.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org.