Bedford Sports Talk
The Bedford Jaguars Division 10, 12 and 13 cheerleading teams successfully defended their state champion titles, as each gave an amazing performance Saturday at the NHAYC State Cheerleading Competition. The Division 8 squad gave an outstanding performance on the day, and placed second for its division. The Tiny Mite and Adaptive Cheer teams once again were the fan favorites, bringing the auditorium to their feet with their amazing routines. The four teams will be competing in Londonderry on Saturday and the three state champions will be off to regionals in Hartford on Nov. 23.
On a beautiful afternoon for football, the Bedford Jaguars played their last 2013 game against a formidable Pelham Razorback team. The Jaguars came ready to play and were looking to take home a state title, but the Razorbacks proved to be a mighty opponent. The Jaguar defense had some strong plays, holding the Razorbacks from making extra points and keeping the game close through the first half, but the Jaguar offense struggled to find the end zone. The boys never gave up and pushed up the field to get within yards of a score within the final minutes of the game, but in the end the Razorbacks held their lead, and took the title game.
The Pee Wee team posted a strong victory over Merrimack on Saturday, 26-8, and earned a spot in the state championship game.
Both sides of the ball played well. The defense was led by the hard hitting of Connor Hujsak, who also intercepted a pass and ran a fumble back for a fourth-quarter TD. Jack Grogan led the charge for the fierce defensive line. There were also strong defensive contributions by Jack Jones, Jared Neikam, Liam O’Connell, Ethan Van Heerden, Ben Sylvain, Parker Joyce, Paul Martineau, Joey Leary, Will Curran and Will Detscher.
On the offensive side of the ball, long sustained drives were made possible by great blocking from Kyle Lavigne, Scot Landies, Zack Bernard, Austin Dearborn, Drake Tompkinson and Matt Shwartz. Jordan Dyer had a flawless game at QB, connecting on multiple key passes and running for critical first downs.
Connor O’Connell led the ground attack scoring two TDs. Ben Black and Liam O’Connell both made critical receptions, runs and blocks throughout the game. Connor Hujsak provided also provided great blocks and posted a rushing TD as well.
Tiny Mite Red
Tiny Mite Red battled the Southern NH Steelers in the Super Bowl on Sunday. Danny Black set the bar high with a touchdown on the first run from scrimmage. Gavin LaValle, Jack Riso and Jeremy Laurendeau all treated the Bedford fans to a running clinic with countless broken tackles, nice cut-backs for extra yards and touchdowns. Key blocks thrown by Nick Polishan, Amir Baadani, Evan Masalanka and Juju Espaillat helped open gaps for the running game. Cousins Brady and RJ Proulx helped the offense by recovering Steeler fumbles at key moments of the game. Carter Rick and brothers Jack and Kevin Mastrodicasa stopped all inside runs with the help from linebacker Dean Poltronieri. Brothers Ethan and Aaron Chmielecki disrupted several plays in the backfield after blasting past their blockers. Caleb Goldstein finished the game with a nice tackle on a Steeler twice his size. Griffen Clang, who was sidelined due to injury, did a great job assisting the coaches with play calling and motivating his teammates.
Tiny Mite Silver
The Tiny Mite Silver squad finished the 2013 season as the featured Super Bowl nightcap, squaring off in a rematch with Manchester Eagles under the bright lights of the NH Sportsplex in Bedford. On offense, 10 different Bulldogs carried the ball, including the first career runs for fullback Hudson Schmitt and Logan O’Connell. Spencer Henrichon capped off a stellar Tiny Mite career with three TDs, shaking and baking the Eagles for over 150 yards. The offensive line was anchored by the inspiring play of Christian Morley, who was assisted by Brody Cassidy, John Martineau, Andre Steinbrueck and Zach Gilroy, as they opened huge rushing lanes for the Bulldogs. On defense, the shining moment came with a goal line stand that featured Tyler Johnston, John Kramer, Nate Clark, Brady Doldo and Ethan Christerson refusing entry into the end zone despite a first-and-goal on the 2-yard line. The corner play of Brady Jackson and Justin Chiras left the Eagles befuddled all evening.
Mitey Mite Red
The Bedford Jr. Bulldogs Mitey Mite Red team defeated the Amherst Patriots 14-12 in the bowl game. Jaden Gangwer got things going for the Bulldogs by recovering a fumble to thwart Amherst’s first possession. The Bulldogs then went on a long drive to open the scoring, aided by the blocking of Austin Bouch, Ben Stuart, Andrew Johnson, Ian Hinsley and Kieran Rice. The drive was capped by a TD pass from Evan Cibotti to Cam Healey, and Cibotti muscled his way into the end zone to convert the extra point. Finn O’Neil recovered a fumble on Amherst’s next possession and Healey recovered another one later in the first half. Ethan
Flanagan, Quinn Hinsley, Cristhian Espaillat, Brendan Thronton and Vinny Poltronieri led the way for a second Bulldogs scoring drive. Nick Lacroix took it to the house after a long run by Josh Tobin and Maddox Muir bulled his way in to convert the extra point and make the lead 14-0. Amherst was able to get into the end zone to bring the score to 14-6 at the half. The second half was a defensive struggle, with big tackles by Dylan MacLeod, Tyler Merkle, Thomas Rice and Nick Fontaine.
But Amherst was able to get closer with another TD to make it 14-12 and threatened to take the lead by getting it into the red zone late in the fourth quarter. Andrew McGee became a one-man wrecking crew to stop the Patriots in their tracks. With a few minutes remaining, the Bulldogs needed to eat up some clock but they fumbled the ball, giving Amherst one last chance. Another great defensive stand and a fumble recovery by Muir sealed the game for the Bulldogs.
Mitey Mite Silver
Joe Mikol made an incredible catch of an Aiden O’Connell pass but was called just short of the end zone as time expired and the Mitey Mite Silver Junior Bulldogs fell 21-20 to the Merrimack Cardinals. Ryan Wallat bolted in a TD from 75 yards away behind Zach Dion, Colin Chandonnet and Ryan Ashburner. O’Connell added the extra point behind Ryan Allard, Hunter Fennessy and Andrew Grudinskas.
It was the 10th straight game that Mitey Mite Silver scored on its first possession. After a defensive stand, lead by Sean Toscano, Cole Wolfinger and Nathan Pratte, the Bulldogs again scored, this time as O’Connell followed Ethan Healey, Jack Keegan and Dylan Bellerose. Presley Trento banged in this PAT behind Gabe Tomkinson, Cooper Cassidy and Corey Lipke.
After Merrimack tied it, Evan Schmitt made a huge block on a Willie Kramer kick return that got the crowd going. Ryan Luca made an incredible catch but was ruled not quite in the end zone to end the first half. Jackson Bulldoc, Brady Martino and Aiden Morley were big in a defensive stand to start the second half. Ryan Cote then lead the Bulldogs on their last drive, as O’Connell got in the end zone for the Bulldogs third and final score. The Bulldogs ended both halves inside the 1-yard line as time ran out.
Jr. Pee Wee Red
The Bedford Jr. Bulldogs dropped a tough playoff game to the Merrimack Cardinals 7-6. Bedford shutout the Merrimack Cardinals the entire first half with tough defense by Phillip Tuscano, Will Scholl, Evan Dunn, Gunner Grant, Caleb Luca, Max Maniello, Ryan Jager, Conor Mullin, Joey Lupo, Amr Baadani, Aidan Wolfinger, Nate Frederick, Aidan Landman and Jack Lavoie. Starting the second half, the Bulldog offense, led by QB Nate Frederick marched the ball down the field with a punishing running game by Joey Lupo, Conor Mullin, Ryan Jager and Jacob Plage.
This is where Jacob Plage, thanks to outstanding blocking by the offensive line, including center Colby Davis, lineman Even Dunn, Hayden Cheney, Caleb Dudas, Aiden Wolfinger and Jack Kemp, plowed through a tough Merrimack defense, breaking numerous tackles for the Bulldogs only touchdown. With time running out, the Bulldogs struck with a great pass from Frederick to Caleb Dudas for huge yardage, putting the Bulldogs in striking distance to win the game. Unfortunately, several penalties and a tough Merrimack defense stopped the Bulldogs’ drive. Merrimack counter attacked, while eating up time in the fourth quarter. Unfortunately, the Bulldogs ran out of time.
Junior High Jr. Varsity
The Bulldogs beat Merrimack 18-8 to advance to the championship against Lowell, Mass., next week. The Dogs came out scoring first with a Dillon Boutin run for a TD. Excellent blocking by Josh Knoettner, Trumen Larson, Ryan Fox, Mason Albert and Pat Harrington led the way.
The Dogs scored again on another Dillon Boutin long run for a TD going up 12-0. Merrimack came back in the second half making the score 12-8 but Bedford scored again on a Mike Mullen pass to Mason Adams in the end zone. There were several great offensive runs by Cole Glennon, Steve Chartier and Kyle Fink. The defense played great behind, Tyler Barnard, Anthony Bobo, Rylan Lewandowski, Nick Buzzelli, and the Murray brothers.
Junior High Varsity
Bedford advanced to the NEJHL Championship with its overtime win against Merrimack 22-14. The Dogs got on the board first with a Harry LeGoullon TD run, behind excellent blocking by Garrett Kondek, Spencer Adams, Ben Lacombe, Kamy Nikseresht and Colton Krasinski. The extra point kick was blocked. Merrimack came right back with a deep pass to score and converted its two-point play to go up 8-6 at the half. Bedford came back with a TD run by Liam Jackson and a two-point play run in by QB Connor Roberts to go back up 14-8.
Merrimack again came back with a few minutes left in the game with a TD score making it 14-14. Merrimack went for the extra point score to go up but was stopped on the 1-yard line, keeping the score at 14-14 going into over time. The Bedford defense had several key stops by Greg Wheeler, Evan Catania, Jakob Toon and Ryan Toscano. Bedford scored first in OT on a Harry LeGoullon run up the middle. Bedford went for the two-point play on a Zac Tucci throw to Josh Koellmer. Merrimack had its set of downs to tie the game but was stopped hard by a crushing hit by Noah Sferrazza, causing a fumble. Liam Jackson recovering the ball to end the game in overtime. Bedford Bulldogs will play Lowell in the championship Sunday at Gill Stadium.
Bedford freshmen football
The Bedford High School freshman football team defeated Manchester Central 41-0 on Oct. 31. The Bulldogs ended their season 8-0. The team was lead by head coach Noah Pion, who did an amazing job with these young men. This is the first Bedford freshman football team to have a perfect season and their first year in Division I.
The Bedford Cannons lacrosse program will open registration for the spring 2014 on Nov. 11. The program is open to boys and girls ages 7-14, and this year also includes a new program, Lil’ Laxers, for boys and girls 4-6. Registration should be done early, and for more details, to go www.bedford