By: Ross Laorenza
It was a great start to the playoffs for the Concord Crimson Tide as they defeated Manchester Central’s Little Green 53-14. It didn't take very long to get the scoring started in this one. On their second play from scrimmage quarterback Robert Law (#10) connected with wideout Seimou Smith (#1) for a 59 yard touchdown. With less than a minute gone by in the game Concord leads 7-0.
Concord controlled the ball for most of the first quarter, stopping Central on fourth down just across midfield and then forcing a three and out. A short punt set up Concord with first and 10 from the Little Green 37. Wasting no time at all running back Leo Sudieh (#8) broke through the line and scored the 37 yard rushing touchdown. The Tide missed the PAT and ended the first quarter with a 13-0 lead.
Central started their next drive at their own 8, but slowly began to move to ball down field. Aided by two crucial penalties on Concord, Central drove 92 yards in 14 plays and capped their drive with a 19 yard touchdown by standout running back Jesiah Wade (#25).
Concord would respond with a lengthy drive of their own. With a running combination of Leo Sudieh (#8), Marc Gaudet (#14), and Walters Ndi (#42) the Crimson Tide marched the ball down to the 2 yard line. All but one play was on the ground. Facing first and goal Marc Gaudet plunged in over the line for the touchdown. PAT was good. Tide lead 20-7 with 3:57 remaining.
In a huge swing of momentum, Central fumbled the ensuing kickoff and Concord recovered on the 20 yard line. It took only three plays and Marc Gaudet found the endzone for his second rushing touchdown of the game. Concord would go for a two-point conversion but Leo Sudieh was stopped just short. With 3:09 remaining in the half Concord leads 26-7.
After a Central three and out the ball went back over to Concord. This time it was Robert Law leading the way with his arm. With only 2:00 to go in the half Law helped his team get one more score in before the half. He completed 4 out of 5 passes on the drive including a 16 yard strike to Marc Gaudet for a touchdown with 9 second left on the clock. PAT soared wide again.
At the half Crimson Tide: 32, Little Green: 7.
Central differed the coin toss and would start the second half with the ball. The drive seemed to be picking up steam, until a costly fumble brought it to an abrupt end. Concord recovered and returned the ball all the way down inside the 20. After a holding penalty pushed them back Law took to the air again, finding Seimou Smith for a 26 yard touchdown. PAT was no good. Tide leads 38-7.
Central rebounded quickly after the fumble. Quarterback Richie Greeley (#10) found some success through the air. After a 25 yard pass to Abe Madra (#5), he found Julio Rincon (#8) for a 43 yard touchdown. PAT good. Central trails 14-38 with 8:01 remaining in the 3rd quarter.
The Tide seemed to have great field position all day. They started the ensuing possession at the 42. Seven plays later Leo Sudieh wound find the endzone again on a 32 yard rushing touchdown. The Tide successfully converted the two-point conversion and wound end the 3rd quarter with a 46-14 lead.
With running time in effect it didn't take long for the fourth quarter to melt away. With their secondary offense on the field Concord wound add one more score. Running back John Jellue (#44) scored on a tough 36 yard run up the gut and into the defensive back field. One fan cheered, “End it on a good note!” And the PAT was successful.
Final score Crimson Tide: 53, Little Green: 14.
From Memorial Field in Concord, New Hampshire. Ross Laorenza: New Hampshire Notebook