NEWBURYPORT— Though certain points of yesterday’s game weren’t looking particularly good for the Marblehead football team, the end result was more than satisfying — in the form of a double overtime victory.
Down by two scores midway through the third quarter, the Magicians rallied to tie the game in regulation, then won it in the second extra session with a touchdown pass from Ian Maag to Dylan Cressy on the game’s final play for a 23-20 triumph over Newburyport at World War II Memorial Stadium.
A senior quarterback, Maag (17 completions for 237 yards) targeted Cressy in the end zone from eight yards out, moving from the pocket and creating space for himself before finding Cressy for the winning touchdown.
“I’ve never been involved in an overtime game,” said fourth-year Marblehead head coach Jim Rudloff, whose team remained unbeaten at 5-0. “It was exciting and worth the money.
“I wish it hadn’t been an overtime game; I really wish it hadn’t been this close. I have to say that Newburyport had the best defensive line that we’ve played against. I don’t know if we successfully executed more than two plays. They were monsters.”
In the overtime format, each team had four plays to score from the 10-yard line. Marblehead went first and managed a Newell field goal to go up 17-14. Newburyport followed suit with a field goal of its own and again the scoreboard showed a tie at 17-all.
The Clippers elected to go first in double overtime and were forced to settle for another field goal on a fourth down situation. Taking over with a chance to win it, Maag ran for 2 yards for Marblehead before firing his TD pass to Cressy on second down to end it.
The contest, believed to be Marblehead’s second-ever OT contest (and first overtime win), started off with the host Clippers (2-3) dominating the plays. Penalties plagued the Magicians in the opening quarters and Newburyport took advantage.