Turnovers Prove Costly as Andover Falls to Cushing

Suffering from early turnovers and a formidable Cushing offense, Andover Football lost to Cushing 6-41. Andover started the game with a quick defensive stop, containing the talented Cushing running back. Andover then moved the ball well, with strong running from Beau Palin ’10, who averaged 4.7 yards per rush. Despite a strong defensive start, Andover lost momentum on the third play of the drive, fumbling the ball. Coach Leon Modeste commented, “It was a debacle. After the fumble, the wheels fell off and we just didn’t play well for the rest of the game.” Andover finished the first half trailing Cushing 0-14. In the third quarter, Cushing scored on a 59-yard completion. This touchdown put the game out of Andover’s reach, as the team went on to lose, 6-41. Luke Duprey ’10 explained that mental errors played a large role in the game. “Our offense would get going, and make some great drives down the field, but the further down the field we got, the more mental errors we made. Penalties, blocking schemes, and routes were all getting sloppy,” he said. Although Andover did not come away victorious, there were a few promising performances by the team. Tommy Shannon ’12 got his first start in the Andover uniform at quarterback, filling the shoes of the injured Andy Vailas ’10. Coach Modeste was impressed with Shannon’s play. He said, “Tommy did a solid job filling in for Vailas this weekend. Not only did he play well at quarterback, he also did a great job punting. The performance bodes well for our future.” Andover looks to bounce back from the disappointing defeat. Duprey said, “I think that the team will be stronger than ever now that we lost. We thought we were invincible because our team is incredibly talented. Now we will play with a chip on our shoulder. There is no way we should have tied Choate or lost to Cushing.” “I think the team will respond with hard work, discipline, and respect for every opponent. I don’t think anyone wants to have the feeling we had after the Cushing game, and I don’t think we will for the rest of the season,” Duprey added. Andover will play Northfield Mount Hermon on Saturday, hoping to get back on the winning track. The team plans to reflect on the loss and will work on the fundamentals in preparation for Saturday’s game. Modeste said, “Losing happens to everyone, even the best, but it’s all about how you rebound.”