LYNN – In the 103rd Thanksgiving meeting for the Battle of Lynn at Manning Field, the 2017 Lynn English football team stamped its name into program history.
The Bulldogs blanked Lynn Classical, 38-0, to become just the third Lynn English team to reach the 10-win milestone in a season. Junior tailback Ishmile Bangura rushed for 164 yards and a touchdown on 14 carries, senior Ski Gaston ran for two scores, and junior quarterback Matt Severance threw two TD passes.
“This one feels good,” said English coach Chris Carroll.
“This 2017 team for us is just a special, special team. A close-knit, family group, and to end it this way playing four great quarters of football was a really special way to end the season.”
From the start, English (10-1) looked ready to avenge last year’s heartbreaking loss. The defense forced a quick three-and-out, and the offense went on a 16-play, 67-yard drive that eclipsed nearly eight minutes off the clock and was capped Bangura’s 4-yard touchdown run.
The Bulldogs collected two turnovers in the first quarter, on interceptions from junior Prince Brown and senior Seth Lukindo, and only allowed three first downs.
English scored in the second quarter on a Brown 22-yard touchdown catch to take a 16-0 lead at halftime.
“We tried to get some things going early, but every time we tried to get stuff going they were able to make a play defensively,” said Classical coach Brian Vaughan.
The second half was much of the same for Classical (8-3), which failed to convert on fourth-down plays, yielding field position to English.
On English’s first drive in the half, Severance found senior Juan Avelino wide open for a 23-yard touchdown. Gaston then scored twice in the fourth quarter on runs of 2 and 6 yards straight up the middle to put the game out of hand at 38-0.
“Classical is a great team, and they had a great season. I just think we were more prepared and we executed,” said Severance.
More photos from Thursday’s Lynn English-Lynn Classical game:Karl Capen can be reached at email@example.com.