TOPSFIELD — A fast start and a strong finish ultimately made for a good night for the Masconomet Regional football team.
The host Chieftains scored the game’s first 20 points and held off a late Gloucester charge to defeat the Fishermen, 20-14, at Bunker Stadium for the second time this season.
The Chieftains (6-4) got a fine outing from junior Roby Deschenes, who was making his first start at quarterback. He hooked up with Harry Cwik for a 42-yard touchdown pass in the middle of the first quarter to get his team off to a 6-0 lead, and Masconomet never trailed thereafter.
“It was a great win for us, I wish we could have cleaned it up at the end, but a win is a win — especially against Gloucester,” Masconomet head coach Jim Pugh said. “We had a bunch of players step up, and we dominated the first half.”
Masconomet carried play in every facet of the game in the first 22 minutes by getting a push on both lines, running harder, covering better and executing better.
Following their first touchdown, the Chieftains marched right downfield on their next drive behind tough running from Austin Cashin and Gavin Monagle, along with a nice push from their offensive line. It all resulted in another score as Monagle found the end zone from 5 yards out. Deschenes then hit quarterback-turned-wide receiver Troy Bunker with the conversion to make it 14-0 in the middle of the second quarter.
The Chieftains used a little trickery to get their third score of the half as Deschenes threw a backwards lateral to Bunker, who found a wide open Cory Tines for a 40-yard touchdown pass, making it 20-0 to capping a dominant first half for the home team.
“Roby played an awesome game in his first start,” Pugh said. “And Troy had a big game at receiver, too. That’s where he’s going to play in college, so we wanted to get him some time there. But it was nice to see him throw a touchdown, too.”