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By Michael Flanagan
Hometown Weekly Sports Editor
Coming off a 10-6 win at Ashland last Friday night, it was a perfect start without a perfect ending for the Dover-Sherborn Regional High football team at home on Thursday evening. Playing their first-ever TVL matchup against conference newcomer Dedham (2-2), the Raiders scored on their opening drive and led 7-0 at the half, but surrendered 20 consecutive points in the second half and fell 20-14, falling to 2-2 on the year.
DS elected to receive the opening kickoff, and immediately imposed their will on the Dedham defense with a pair of long completions from quarterback Holden Ferrari to freshman wideout Drew Dummer, including one on fourth down to extend the drive. Ferrari would punch the ball in on a one-yard quarterback sneak play to give DS a 7-0 lead with 5:49 remaining in the first.
The Raiders forced Dedham into a three-and-out on their opening possession of the game, and senior captain Matt Strong returned the Marauder punt down to the 19-yard line to set up the DS offense with the chance to extend their lead to two scores. However, the Dedham defense stuffed DS on fourth down and retained possession.
Junior defensive back Timothy Polk made a nice interception by going up and fighting off a Marauder receiver on a deep ball on the first play of the second quarter. However, a fumble on DS’s ensuing drive gave Dedham back the ball with terrific field position. The Raider defense stood tall, and after stuffing Dedham at the line of scrimmage on three consecutive plays, forced a 23-yard field goal attempt that went wide left, and DS maintained their seven-point edge at the half.
The second half was a different story for Steve Ryan’s group. With 4:31 remaining in the third quarter, Dedham found the end zone on a 13-yard passing touchdown, allowing the game to enter the final frame of regulation tied at seven. The Marauders took their first lead of the game midway throughout the fourth quarter, and later extended it to 20-7 with 4:14 to play. DS would fight back to cut the deficit to six, but the comeback attempt came up short as the Raiders fell 20-14.
The Raiders will look to get back on a winning note when they host Medway on Friday.
For funny and incisive sports analysis, follow Mike Flanagan on his personal Twitter at @fLAno0, or read his blog at www.flannylive.wordpress.com.