“If you saw us earlier in the season, we made more mistakes,” explained Bauer. “We continue to mature and grow. We played pretty well overall against a high powered offense.”
A 12-yard touchdown throw from Manthorne to White that included a killer cut put the Panthers ahead for good at 13-10 on their first drive of the second half.
After another 3-and-out for Lynn English, White’s 5-yard touchdown run made it a two-score game (20-10). Beverly actually fumbled the play before that but recovered it, a good break that probably wouldn’t have happened to them in earlier frustrating losses to Danvers or Gloucester.
White’s pick-six was the the final blow for English’s fading hope of a comeback. It happened on the first play of the fourth quarter as White intercepted Lark in the middle of the field then used a bunch of a blockers to find the goalline. After Madden’s touchdown, the Bulldogs tacked on a 20-yard touchdown catch by O’Connor on their final drive.
Next week is the last game before the new-look MIAA playoffs start, Beverly hosts Swampscott on Saturday at Hurd Stadium. Picking up extra points by beating the higher division Bulldogs should help the Panthers possibly get a home playoff game in a few weeks.
“We were able to finish the game and fix our mistakes,” said Bauer. “We only had two or three penalties, it was much cleaner so that’s where we’ve seen the growth.”