“They were cutting us all the time in the first half, but we were able to get there in the second half,” said Mathers. “Bongo helped me get to the quarterback. Stopping their special teams was huge. Their kicker missed those two field goals, and gave us momentum. Johnathan is a beast, and he was running over two or three guys every time.”
Bavaro, who was in on several big hits along with inside linebacker Sean Smerczynski and tackle Corey Jean-Jacques, said watching films of Andover helped him come up with the pick.
“We were in man, and when I watched the film I saw how they like routes with the wheels coming off so I jumped on it. We bend, but we don’t break. Andover has a great offense, but once they were in the red zone we shut them out.”
Jean-Jacques added that the halftime pep talk got the Eagles rolling. “Coach O said we had to step it up. He told us not to be nervous but go out and play with some heart.”
This was the second straight shutout for the 10-1 Prep, and now they are going back to the Super Bowl, which has been the goal all season.
St. John’s Prep 21, Andover 0
Division 1 semifinals
at Cawley Stadium, Lowell
Andover (10-2) 0 0 0 0 — 0
St. John’s Prep (10-1) 0 0 7 14 — 21
SJP- Johnny Thomas 1 run (Stephan Cammaro kick)
SJP- Thomas 19 run (Cammaro kick)
SJP- Thomas 48 run (Cammaro kick)
RUSHING: Andover — Jackson Sylvester 16-151, C.J. Scarpa 6-7; St. John’s Prep — Johnny Thomas 27-206, Ian Kessel 4-22, Alex Moore 7-20, Jack Sharrio 1-6.
PASSING: Andover — Scarpa 16-26-163-0-2; St. John’s Prep — Sharrio 4-8-47-0-1, Michael Geaslen 0-1-0-0-0.
RECEIVING: Andover — Will Heikkinen 7-98, Sylvester 5-38, Zachary Walker 2-25, Cam Farnham 2-8; St. John’s Prep — Thomas 2-19, Moore 1-13, Anthony Bongiorno 1-10.