To prevent Worcester Academy from advancing on a third down in the second half, Ben Carbeau ’21 came from the quarterback’s blind-side and sacked him with the assistance of Jake Jordan ’20. Despite this defensive effort, Andover fell to Worcester 0-8 to put Andover’s record at 2-4.
“The defense struggled in the first quarter identifying the option, but throughout the game we figured out how to play them, and I think we played them pretty tough,” said Carbeau.
Carbeau continued, “I think defensively we know by now that if we prepare correctly our defense can play with anyone. The past three games, defense has been really consistent and has done really well.”
Andover’s offense struggled to deliver on Saturday both in its passing and running game, according to Carbeau, Julian Dahl ’22, and Graham Archer ’21.
“I think we need a better push on the offensive line. We need to establish the running game early. If we can do that, then we’ll be able to work in all the other parts of our offense. We really just need a better initial push,” said Carbeau.
Dahl said, “Leading up to it, it was kind of a game that we might’ve not taken as seriously because we came in and we were coming off a win against Deerfield and were pretty confident. We just came in there and weren’t able to effectively run the ball. Our defense played really well, but it was windy and hard conditions to throw, and the passing game wasn’t really on point.”
Archer wrote in an email to The Phillipian, “One of our biggest takeaways was getting some push on running plays. Our line had a lot of trouble getting a solid drive going and that hurt us a lot.”
After Saturday’s game, Andover seeks to put its losses behind it and enter its final game with a positive and determined mindset, according Co-Captain Will Litton ’19.
Litton wrote in an email to The Phillipian, “We are starting to look more like a team and we are developing a team identity. That identity being young but gritty. We find ways to be successful through perseverance.”
This week the team has doubled down both in practice and in film study sessions in order to be best prepared for its game against Phillips Exeter Academy, according to Dahl.
“We watched film on Exeter. We scouted them. We’re going to install a couple new passing plays and come out swinging and show some things we haven’t shown before and try to get on the board,” said Dahl.
Since Exeter will be Head Coach Leon Modeste’s final Andover football game, the team is especially motivated to win, according to Litton.
Litton wrote, “We need to work on mastering our assignments and we need to play with more swagger. I think sometimes are afraid to make mistakes and instead we should be having fun with it. Exeter is Coach Mo’s last football game coaching. We are making it our personal duty to send him off the right way with a huge win over our biggest rival.”
Andover will face Exeter at home this Saturday for Andover/Exeter Weekend.