TOWNSEND — St. Peter-Marian, which entered the game with one win, made it look easy in the third quarter, en route to a 27-6 win over North Middlesex on Friday night.
North Middlesex had climbed to within 14-6 late in the second quarter on Evan Woollacott’s 13-yard touchdown pass to D.J. Webb and appeared to have the momentum entering the second half.
But the Guardians regrouped at halftime and iced the game with a pair of effortless scoring drives in the third quarter. The Guardians took the second half kickoff and marched 54 yards on seven plays, capped by quarterback Lamar Edmonds’ three-yard scramble around right end, which made it 20-6 with 6:41 left in the third quarter.
The Patriots moved the sticks on an eight-yard run by T.J. Schools on the ensuing possession, but they shot themselves in the foot. An errant snap created a third-and-28 and forced a punt.
The Guardians quickly put the game out of reach, rolling 51 yards on four plays. Joe Michalowski covered the final 21 yards to make it 26-6, before Vinnie Palmerino added the conversion kick for the final point of the game.
St. Peter-Marian thrived behind a punishing ground game, which amassed 313 rushing yards on 42 attempts. Brian Desimone led the way with 130 yards on 18 carries, followed by Edmonds, who picked up 91 yards on four carries.
Colin Cenedella paced the Patriots with 31 yards on 11 carries while Woollacott rushed for 19 yards and finished with four completions in eight pass attempts for 46 yards.
Guardians get jump
The Patriots couldn’t cash in on an early interception by Nick Morgan and the Guardians jumped on top late in the first quarter when Edmonds broke loose on a 94-yard scoring jaunt to make it 6-0.
After a North Middlesex punt, the Guardians added to the lead with a nine-play, 38-yard march, capped by an eight-yard scoring pass from Edmonds to Kyle Brenner. The same pair hooked up for the conversion points to make it 14-0.
The Patriots sliced into the lead by driving 74 yards on eight plays, keyed by strong running by Cenedella and Woollacott, and finished off by Webb’s touchdown reception.