Big first half powers Sens to second straight

  • Mahar and Athol face off in the first quarter during their Thanksgiving game Thursday morning at the Woodward Complex in Orange. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Mahar’s Charlie Barnes (11) and Kaleb Lemcke (22) tackle Athol’s Vincent Gordon (81) after a reception in the second quarter during their Thanksgiving game Thursday morning at the Woodward Complex.. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Mahar’s Jacob Tenney (27) jumps to reel in an interception intended for Athol’s Jacob Smith (32) in the second quarter of their Thanksgiving game on Thursday morning at the Woodward Complex in Orange. The host Senators made it two years in a row on Turkey Day with a dominant 43-6 victory. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Athol running back Shea Brennan (22) breaks upfield past Mahar’s Dominic Cacciolfi (23) in the first quarter during their Thanksgiving game Thursday morning at the Woodward Complex in Orange. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Mahar’s Jacob Tenney (27) outpaces Athol’s (32) to run in for a touchdown in the first quarter during their Thanksgiving game Thursday morning at the Woodward Complex in Orange. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Athol quarterback Caleb Cox (14) throws under pressure from Mahar’s Jakob Carron (66) in the first quarter during their Thanksgiving game Thursday morning at the Woodward Complex in Orange. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Mahar’s Jakob Carron (66), right, tackles Athol’s Jacob Smith (32) for a loss in the first quarter during their Thanksgiving game Thursday morning at the Woodward Complex in Orange. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Athol quarterback Caleb Cox (14) scrambles under pressure from Mahar’s Luke Melanson (4) in the second quarter during their Thanksgiving game Thursday morning at the Woodward Complex in Orange. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Athol running back Manny O’Lari (44) takes the ball up the middle against Mahar in the third quarter during their Thanksgiving game Thursday morning at the Woodward Complex in Orange. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Athol quarterback Caleb Cox (14) stiff arms Mahar’s Dominic Cacciolfi (23) in the fourth quarter during their Thanksgiving game Thursday morning at the Woodward Complex in Orange. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Mahar defender Todd Chiasson (56) brings down Athol’s Many O’Lari (44) on a run in the third quarter during their Thanksgiving game Thursday morning at the Woodward Complex in Orange. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Athol’s Jacob Smith looks to break upfield against Mahar in the third quarter during their Thanksgiving game Thursday morning at the Woodward Complex in Orange. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Athol lines up against Mahar in the second quarter during their Thanksgiving game Thursday morning at the Woodward Complex in Orange. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Mahar’s Jacob Tenney (27), center, gets his hands on the ball to break up a pass intended for Athol receiver Jacob Smith (32) alongside Charlie Barnes (11) in the first quarter during their Thanksgiving game Thursday morning at the Woodward Complex in Orange. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Athol’s Riley Paine (72) reaches for a fumble in the fourth quarter during their Thanksgiving game Thursday morning at the Woodward Complex in Orange. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Athol quarterback Caleb Cox (14) runs upfield under pressure from Mahar’s Charlie Barnes (11) and Eli Spencer (20) in the fourth quarter during their Thanksgiving game Thursday morning at the Woodward Complex in Orange. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Mahar’s Jacob Tenney (27) jumps to real in an interception intended for Athol’s Jacob Smith (32) in the second quarter during their Thanksgiving game Thursday morning at the Woodward Complex in Orange. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Athol quarterback Caleb Cox (14) winds back to throw against Mahar in the fourth quarter during their Thanksgiving game Thursday morning at the Woodward Complex in Orange. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

Staff Writer
Published: 11/28/2019 8:15:25 PM

ORANGE – The Mahar Regional School football team closed out an eight-win season after defeating crosstown rival Athol High School, 43-6, on Thanksgiving morning at the Woodward Complex.

Athol now leads the all-time series by a 51-32-1 margin. It was the Senators’ second win in a row on Thanksgiving after losing four straight from 2014-2017.

The ball was moved around to several different players throughout the contest, which was indicative of Mahar’s mentality throughout the season.

Senior wide receiver Charlie Barnes played his final game for the Senators, catching two touchdowns. Barnes won the MVP award for Mahar.

“This season was just different from the start,” Barnes said. “This year everybody came together and didn’t care about individual stats. We all just played as a team. Working more for team goals than individual goals.”

This group of Senators had chemistry on the field and everywhere else.

“We had much better chemistry,” Barnes said. “It showed.”

The Senators (8-3) scored on their opening possession, using tempo to march down the field. They led 23-0 after the first quarter.

“We needed to do something to put a little spice in it,” Mahar coach Jim Woodward said.

Jake Tenney closed out a phenomenal junior campaign with six carries for 111 yards and two touchdowns.

Tenney did not touch the ball on offense in the second half.

Peter Tattan, Barnes and Todd Chiasson played their final games for the Mahar football program.

“The kids responded to their leadership,” Woodward said. “They are all good kids.”

Chiasson hoisted the trophy for best lineman after the game, to the exuberant approval of fellow “Trench Mob” member Jakob Carron.

Carron once again had a dominant day along the defensive line with three sacks and three tackles for a loss.

For the Red Raiders it was Riley Paine, Isaac Bastine and Logan Wing putting on the helmet and pads for the final time.

Wing won the award for best lineman.

“It’s been fun,” Wing said. “Lot of hard work. Lot of good coaches. It’s been an interesting four years. I am going to miss it.”

The Red Raiders closed out a tough season, dealing with low numbers throughout the fall campaign.

“I was happy with the way the kids played at the end,” Athol coach Bill LaRose said. “They didn’t quit. That’s all you can ask.”

Manny O’Lari was the MVP for Athol, finishing with six carries for 25 yards on offense.

Athol quarterback Caleb Cox got going as the game progressed, finishing with 63 yards rushing and 65 yards passing. Cox threw a 3-yard touchdown to Vincent Gordon in the fourth quarter for the team’s lone touchdown.

Gordon was the leading receiver for Athol with three catches for 31 yards.

 Jacob Smith had 27 yards rushing for the Red Raiders.

Luke Melanson, Xander Roberts and Connor Sluder all had sacks for the Mahar defense with Tenney and Kaleb Lemcke adding interceptions.

Mahar drove 58 yards on its first possession, needing seven plays to find paydirt with Tenney closing it out with an 8-yard rushing touchdown.

After an Athol turnover on downs, Noaha Chabot connected with Barnes on a 59-yard touchdown.

Barnes broke two tackles on his way to the end zone.

Aydan Sevigny put Mahar ahead 23-0 with a 5-yard rushing touchdown on Mahar’s next possession.

Sevigny carried five times for 25 yards. Jacob Murphy was the second-leading rusher behind Tenney for Mahar with nine carries for 57 yards.

Tenney scampered 38 yards for another Mahar touchdown in the second quarter, putting the Senators ahead 30-0.

Eli Spencer got in the end zone on an 11-yard touchdown just before halftime, sending the Senators to the locker room with a 36-0 lead.

Chabot connected with Barnes for a 1-yard touchdown in the third quarter to close the scoring for Mahar.

Mahar 43, Athol 6

Athol

23

13

7

0

0

Mahar

0

0

0

6

6

M — Tenney 8 rush (Tenney rush)

M — Barnes 59 catch from Chabot (conversion good)

M — Sevigny 5 rush (Kyle Notre kick)

M — Tenney 38 rush (conversion failed)

M — Spencer 11 rush (Notre kick)

M — Barnes 1 catch from Chabot (Notre kick)

A — Gordon 3 catch from Cox (conversion failed)

INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS

RUSHING — (A)Smith 9-27, Deleo 1-0, Paine 1-2, Cox 7-63, Brennan 2-4, O’Lari 6-25. (M) Tenney 6-111-2, Lemcke 1-0, Carey 1-5, Murphy 7-48, Chabot 1-8, Matthews 2-18, Spencer 1-11, Sevigny 5-25,

PASSING — (A) Cox 8-14-63-1-2 (M) Chabot 3-4-61-2.

RECEIVING — (A) Brennan 2-18, Gordon 3-31, Smith 2-14, O’Lari 1-1. (M) Barnes 2-60, Tenney 1-1.




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