Gloucester tightened things up defensively forcing Beverly to turn the ball over on downs before the half with a chance to take a 13-0 deficit into halftime. But Gloucester couldn’t convert a fourth down of its own and the Beverly quick-strike offense came back out on the field with one minute and 49 seconds left.
On the Panthers’ second play, signal caller Dave Rollins faked a wide receiver reverse and hit Isiah White on a 55-yard touchdown pass down the center of the field.
The play was perfect from the line holding its blocks, White burning past the Fishermen’s secondary and Rollins hitting him in stride with a perfectly placed ball.
“It’s always big for momentum going into the second half. We were fortunate we were able to defer (after the opening coin toss) and get the ball in the second half,” said Beverly head coach Dan Bauer who also discussed the Rollins’ TD pass.
“It was a well-executed play. David (Rollins) threw the ball well, Isiah ran hard and the line protected very well too.”
Dom Abate added a two-yard touchdown run to start the third quarter before Luke McDonald scored the final Panther TD on a three yard burst up the middle. Between White, Abate, Pierce and Brendan Flaherty (181 rushing yards combined) the Panthers are one of the toughest teams around to game-plan for.
“Its not easy (stopping Beverly). Everybody talks about Flaherty, but its not just him. They got a lot of guys,” noted Zerilli.
Santo Parisi returned a kickoff 84 yards in the final minute but was caught on the Beverly nine-yard-line. Mark Horgan punched it in from a yard out against the Beverly back ups, in the final minute to spoil the shutout. Beverly wasn’t spectacular against the Gloucester run allowing some 10-plus yard runs over the course of the game. But the Panthers didn’t miss many tackles and Gloucester could never break one.