Shawsheen Falls To Arlington Catholic, Despite Late Comeback
Sep 21, 2015 08:21PM ● Published by Jake Mackey
After last year's tough opening night loss in overtime to the Cougars in Arlington, the returning Rams were looking for revenge.
The Rams started out hot. After a solid return on the opening kick by sophomore Sam Baker, the Rams went right down the field on the Cougars, lead by senior quarterback Jared Roane. The Shawsheen offense tried to establish themselves in the ground game with senior Billy Tamboli, behind veteran offensive lineman such as John Schiavo, Alex Regan, and Phil Massotta.
The Rams were set up in the red zone on their first possession facing a fourth down and five situation. The coaching staff elected to go for it, and their risk paid off as Roane hit senior Dave Lindsey in the corner of the end zone for the touchdown. After the Craig Rich extra point, Shawsheen led 7-0.
On the ensuing kickoff, the Rams recovered a fumble by Arlington Catholic, setting them up in good position to take an early two score lead. The players certainly listened head coach Al Costabile's old mantra of, "start fast!"
Jared Roane took the Rams back down the field, and it seemed as if they were heading into score yet again. However, the Rams were intercepted by the Cougars. At the start of the second quarter, Arlington Catholic running back Paul Soliviletti scored on the ground evening the score, 7-7.
The Rams struggled to get anything going on offense, and a blocked punt deep in Rams territory swung momentum in favor of the Cougars. The Cougars nailed a field goal putting them up 10-7, and got the ball right back as the Jared Roane fumbled an attempted hand off. Jack Ryan then brought in a nine-yard touchdown pass from Christian Rosati. 17-7 Cougars.
Sophomore quarterback Cody Sughrue came into the game temporarily at the end of the first half. The Rams managed to get the ball into the red zone on the back of running back Billy Tamboli. Nevertheless, the sophomore quarterback was picked off at the one-yard line, by Paul Soliviletti and taken all the way back for a touchdown. 24-7 Cougars at the half.
For much of the third quarter, the Rams defense kept the game in tact while the offense struggled to get anything going. Although, at the end of the third quarter, the Rams were uplifted by Billy Tamboli as he bursted free for 36-yard touchdown run, narrowing the lead to 24-14, and shifting momentum slightly heading into the fourth quarter.
On the following series by the Cougars, senior defensive back and wide receiver Andy Diranian of the Rams, made a phenomenal break on the ball in the middle of the field to intercept the Jack Ryan pass. His second of the afternoon.
After great catch at the twenty-yard line by Diranian, and a face mask penalty on the Cougars, Shawsheen was set up inside the ten with just under six minutes to go, down by ten. Tamboli then forced his way across the goal line, to make it just a four point game after the missed extra point.
With five minutes left in the game, the Rams defense needed a quick stop to get the offense back on the field with enough time to score. Unfortunately, the defense failed to do so giving up conversations a big third and ten conversion early in the series, and two fourth down conversions later on. The last, with one-minute left, where Paul Soliviletti ran a great hitch and go route for a touchdown, sealing the 31-20 victory.
After the game, head coach Al Costabile was proud of his teams effort.
"Adversity build character and we showed a lot of character," he said. "We lifted ourselves off the canvas by fighting back the way we did, being down by four points with six minutes to go, showed a lot of character about this football team."
Shawsheen takes on Mystic Valley in another non-league match up, this Saturday afternoon at Cassidy Field.