Defense leads way
It might have been a short week between games for the Hollis Brookline High School football team, but it didn’t feel like it to the Cavaliers.
After getting pummeled by Windham in the season opener on Sunday, Friday night’s game at Milford couldn’t come soon enough. And in that short period of time, the Cavs turned their season around.
Matt Ferenzchalmy rushed for 157 yards and the game-winning touchdown on 29 carries and the HB defense forced five turnovers, including three interceptions, to beat Milford 13-7 in a Division II non-conference game.
The Cavs (1-1) gained all but 5 of their 216 yards on the ground and the defense held the Spartans (1-1) to just 52 yards in the second half.
“Nothing feels better than getting that bad taste out of your mouth,” HB coach Chris Lones said. “We told them we’re playing another tough opponent because (Milford) is a really good football team. We talked about all week that we had to play our best game in order to have a chance to win.”
Milford had opportunities. Twice in the first half, the Spartans had the ball inside the HB 20, but penalties pushed them back.
Down six with 4:58 left in the fourth, Milford’s defense forced the ball over on downs at its own 22-yard line, but on the first play, Max Urda’s pass over the middle was intercepted by Tommy Grant.
The Spartans defense held again and blocked a 30-yard field attempt by Cole Owens, but the offense sputtered and HB was able to run out the clock.
“They beat us in every facet of the game,” Milford coach Keith Jones said. “They got off the ball faster than us, they sustained blocks longer than us. We had a lot of penalties, too many turnovers.
“There’s no recipe for winning if you’re going to have penalties and turnovers, and not play well.”
Matt Madigan led Milford with 55 yards rushing and gave the Spartans the lead with a 12-yard touchdown run with 3:38 to go in the first quarter. HB answered with a 4-yard scoring run by Wyatt Farwell, but Owens’ extra point was blocked, leaving Milford up 7-6 with 11:29 to go in the half.
That’s where the score stood until Ferenzchalmy’s 40-yard touchdown run put HB up for good with 6:56 remaining in the third.