In the third quarter of the game, Jake Bedell PG ’19 dodged a tackle for a 50-yard run into the end zone, scoring Andover Football’s first touchdown of the game. Despite strong efforts, Andover fell 13-46 to Salisbury on Saturday, bringing its record to 1-1.
Although Andover worked to hold their own against a larger Salisbury team, mistakes in execution cost them the game, according to Graham Archer ’21 and Head Coach Leon Modeste.
Archer said, “Our linemen are pretty quick and skilled, but we lack size. Most of us are considered small for linemen. I think that most if not all of Salisbury’s linemen were around the 300-pound mark, which is something we just don’t have. To counter this, we worked on different blocking schemes and techniques all week. I think that these worked well enough to allow us to do our job decently despite being the smaller team.”
Coach Modeste said, “They had such a big line that they would start pushing our guys one way, and the runner would just come behind and go the other way. We missed some tackles, and probably the play that really hurt us was when we had a pass go off our guy’s hands and they intercepted it and went for a touchdown… We turned the ball over four times, and we just can’t do that.”
Magnus Voge PG ’19 and Coach Modeste remarked on the performances of many of the team’s Seniors and Post-Graduates, as well as the overall team effort.
Voge said, “[Sal Lupoli PG ’19] ran the ball well as always. Lucas Blasi [PG ’19]…had his first game after an injury had him sidelined week one, and he showed that he is a weapon on both sides of the ball.”
Coach Modeste added, “Sal Lupoli is ridiculous, he’s really good. Jake Bedell did a really good job, and we’ve had some pretty steady plays from Ricardo Hernandez [’19]. All in all, everything’s a team effort. Obviously, you see Sal’s yards, and he’s so tough. He did a great job, but he will tell you first that it’s all about team — it’s not about any one guy.”
Despite being down by a large deficit for most the game, the team continued to persevere, according to Co-Captain Will Litton ’19.
In an email to The Phillipian, Litton wrote, “Although we started out [badly], we never quit. Our execution was poor, but we played as hard as we could for 48 minutes. Fortunately, we know what we need to correct.”
Andover will face Choate away this Saturday. In preparation for this game, the team hopes to improve on its passing, defensive blocks, and mental focus, according to Coach Modeste and Voge.
“We hope to improve our passing game and be a little smarter with who we throw to and when. Defensively, we really want to try and stop the run because guys have been running on us… So if we can make Choate have to pass, that would probably be to our advantage rather than letting them just run the ball,” said Coach Modeste.
Voge added, “Obviously, we have a lot of stuff to work on. Offensively, we had spurts where it looked really good, but the turnovers and other small mistakes killed us. Defensively, we need to be more disciplined in our assignments and in breaking down on the ball carrier. There were good things on both sides, so if we eliminate the mistakes, we can be the great team that we know we can be.”