By: Ross Laorenza
The Milford Spartans are now 5-1 after an impressive 46-12 victory of the Trinity Pioneers. Mark Madigan (#20) led the way on the ground for Milford, rushing for 103 yards and 2 touchdowns. Madigan also recorded a 85 yard kickoff return for a touchdown and an interception in the game. We played well in all three phases.
Milford also saw big contributions rushing from, Bryce Walker (#7), Tegan Vitali (#26) and Padrick Harvey (#9).
"I thought overall we executed very well. We executed very physically," said head coach Keith Jones. "We were trying to be physical with them (Trinity) and play on their side of the line of scrimmage. I'd say 95 percent of the night we won the trench war."
The Spartans were able to stifle Trinity's vaunted running attack of Saikou Bah (#20), and will Sheppard (#33). Constant pressure from interior rushers kept Pioneers' quarterback Pat Mackey out of rhythm and unable to mount a comeback when his team fell behind early.
Milford scored on their first two possession with a touchdown run from Walker and a beautiful 30 yard pass from Max Urda (#22) to Kirk Paladino (#6).
After Nick Perdue (#36) powered his way into the endzone for Trinity to cut the lead in half, Mark Madigan responded with a 85 yard kickoff return for a touchdown. Milford completed their first successful PAT to lead 19-6.
A blocked punt by Tegan Vitali gave the Spartans excellent field position on their next possession at the Pioneer 42. Six plays later Mark Madigan scored on a 1-yard dive to put his team up 25.
Madigan showed some great ball skills on Trinity's following possession, reading the eyes of the quarterback and intercepting a pass deep down field.
"We had the flats covered, and we knew they had a flag route coming," said Madigan of the pick, "I just sat in my zone, did my job and they threw the ball right to me."
Playing the hot hand, Madigan got the ball on the next offensive play and ran the distance 31 yards for a score. "We knew we had to be strong up front and that's exactly what we did," said Madigan. "Me and Bryce and the fullback; we had huge holes to run through all game."
For what was billed as a highly touted matchup of top D-II teams, this game was over by the half. Trinity used the spread for most of the second half as they tried to climb out of a 32-6 hole. They were able to hit a few big passes but the Spartans defense held strong only allowing one additional touchdown from Mackey to Colin Hines (#3).
Patrick Harvey and Bryce Walker added second half touchdowns on the ground for Milford. Final score Milford: 46, Trinity: 12.
Milford has a bye week next week just as they were starting to heat it. It will be interesting to see how the matchup in their next game against the currently undefeated Windham Jaguars.
From Milford, New Hampshire. Ross Laorenza: New Hampshire Notebook