Milford routs HB

MILFORD – While one of its toughest games of the season loomed, Milford High School tended to the business at hand Friday night.

As preludes go, the Spartans couldn’t have asked for much more. A 42-7 win over Hollis Brookline lifted Milford to 3-3 as it prepares for this Friday night’s game at 6-0 Pelham.

The Pythons had an unexpected week off. Lebanon, winless and running low on healthy players, was forced to forfeit their scheduled game at Pelham.

That bit of rest for Pelham may make the challenge steeper for the Spartans.

“They are a hard-working, hard-nosed, tough group,” said Rick Urda, who served as head coach as Keith Jones recovers from an illness. “They are going to come after you on defense and swarm the ball, tackle hard. Offensively they’re going to try and be comfortable.They’re just as tough on offense.”

The Spartans took control on both sides of the ball by midway through the first quarter against the Cavaliers. Seldom does a football game turn around as quickly – and decisively

After stopping Milford’s first scoring opportunity on downs, the Cavaliers took over on their own 4-yard line. Two plays later – an incomplete pass and a lost fumble – the Spartans set up on the HB 2 and Trice Cote took it in from there.

It was the first of six Milford scores. With the lead 35-0 at the half, the second half was played in running time.

“The execution was good, they did what we coached them during the week,” Urda said. “It’s very satisfying. I think the kids are pretty satisfied with their efforts.”

Their efforts paid off big in the first half as the Spartans methodically put the game out of reach.

On their second possession, which opened at the HB 42, Cade Cloutier’s 15-yard run and Chris Costifas’ 15-yard burst set up Cote for a 12-yard TD carry, with Cloutier knocking through his second of five PATs.

Quarterback Charles Urda connected with Cloutier for a 13-yard gain, then scooped up a bad snap and took off down the right sideline for a 42-yard score.

Cote’s 6-yard run with 10:17 left in the half, and another long scoring run by Urda, this one from midfield, rolled it up to 35-0 at the half.

Milford kept Hollis Brookline off the board until late in the third quarter. Runs of 15 and 4 yards by Elliot Troddyn, Keira Swart’s PAT, made it 35-7 with 5:20 left in the third.

“Defensively we did a super job tonight, putting them behind the sticks, forcing them into predictable downs,” Rick Urda said.

Freshman Liam Zahn closed the scoring with a 4-yard TD run, with Brode Howard tacking on the PAT.

“They’re about what we expected,” HB coach Chris Lones said. “They’ve always been a good team, always been competitive and always been well coached.”

While Jones was at the game, having just been released from a 10-day hospital stay but still recuperating, he left Friday night’s work to Urda.

“We’re very happy he’s back on the sidelines with us and hope he can take the reins next week,” Urda said.