By Michael James LeClair
The Nashoba Regional football team saw its 17-game winning streak snapped at the hands of Alqonquin Regional in week one of the 2016 season.
On Friday night the Chieftains were ready to start a new winning streak and the first team standing in their way was visiting Shrewsbury High School. Nashoba showed no mercy on its guest, blanking the Colonials 24-0.
Nashoba improves to 1-1 on the season while Shrewsbury dips to 1-1.
The win by the Chieftains helps them build a little momentum heading into their week three matchup with host Groton-Dunstable Regional on Friday night. The Crusaders enter Friday night’s battle with the Chieftains fresh off a 21-15 loss courtesy of the Guardians of St. Peter Marian.
“Shrewsbury is a great program,” said Nashoba head coach Jamie Tucker. “They are always going to be good so that was a good win for us, especially after last week.”
Similar to what he did in the season opener against the Tomahawks, Nashoba’s Nate Mansour made another big play on specials teams. For the second straight game, Mansour ran back a kickoff for a touchdown. This time it was the contest’s opening kickoff as Mansour ran it back 90-yards to the end zone for a quick 6-0 lead. Alex Childs kicked the extra point to give the hosts a 7-0 advantage before Shrewsbury’s offense even stepped on the field.
Childs added to the Chieftains’ lead when he kicked a 33-yard field goal to make it 10-0 with 4:54 left in the first quarter.
Nashoba tacked on seven more points with 8:24 left before halftime when Jake Fire muscled his way across the goal line from nine yards out. Childs added the extra point to make it 17-0. Fire finished the contest with 66 yards on the ground on 11 carries.
The hosts capped the scoring in the third quarter, after a Shrewsbury punt, the Chieftains embarked on an eight-play drive that covered 85 yards.
Junior Kyle Hume found paydirt when he pounded his way across the goal line from the five-yard line. Childs extra point was true to make it 24-0.
Nashoba’s Nick Rodgers had a very productive night carrying the football. Rodgers finished the evening with 91 yards on the ground on 10 carries.
The Chieftains head coach showered several of his players with praise following their dominating performance Friday night.
“(Luke) Danby was terrific,” Tucker said. “The linebackers did a great job. (Kyle) Hume and (Jake) Fire, they were all great. It looks like the line did an excellent job staying home because they were running a lot of read stuff, which is hard to defend, because you don’t really know who they are reading. We did a good job of getting in the backfield, causing a little bit of havoc.”
After their trip down Route 119 to Groton, the Chieftains return home to begin preparing for an early season showdown. Nashoba welcomes Central Massachusetts powerhouse St. John’s of Shrewsbury to Bolton on September 30 before a trip to Crocker Field to take on Fitchburg High School on October 7.