Saturday, November 19, 2016
Hanover Rolls Into D3 Finals With Route of Triton
By Nate Rollins (@n_rollins1)
BROCKTON, Mass. - Hanover High overpowered Triton Regional on both sides of the ball in a 54-13 victory Saturday afternoon, to advance to its first Super Bowl in over 40 years.
Hanover will meet Grafton (11-0) in the Division 3 state final Saturday, December 3rd at Gillette Stadium.
“I just really want to get there,” Hanover quarterback Wyatt Shisler said. “I can’t wait for the game.”
Brad Rogers turned in yet another stellar performance on the ground for the South Sectional champion Indians, finding the end zone four times for the second straight week on 190 yards rushing.
“He’s a hard runner, he bounces off the runs, he’s a workhorse for us,” Hanover head coach Chris Landolfi said.
Shisler, who was hindered a bit due to injury, completed just three passes in the first half, but they were monumental, all going for scores in the win.
“It’s amazing how well he puts it on,” Landolfi said of Shisler’s performance.
After a Hanover (10-0) sack by defensive end Chris Greene forced a punt, the Indians took all of 1:38 to find the end zone. Just three plays into the drive, Shisler connected with sophomore receiver Andrew Carroll (two receptions for 48 yards, two TDs) on a 26-yard touchdown pass to put the Indians ahead 7-0 after the extra point.
“Carroll has always been lurking in the background a little bit, but he’s a hell of a player,” Landolfi said. “He doesn’t get the balls, he doesn’t get the throws, but when he does he always catches the ball. He’s always in the right spot too.”
With 1:15 remaining in the first, North Sectional champion Triton (8-3) took over at its own 4-yard line. The Vikings were able to advance the ball to their 40, but Hanover’s Michael Nimeskern sacked Triton signal caller Lewi L’Heureux (10 of 16 for 97 yards in first half) in the backfield for a loss of 11 yards to force a punt.
On the following Hanover possession, Shisler connected with Carroll, who made a spectacular reception in the back of the end zone for a 22-yard score to push the Indians ahead 14-0.
“That was a great catch,” Shisler said. “I just thought he looked sort of open, so throw it up to him and he came down with it.”
On its ensuing drive, Triton had its best possession offensively in the first half, marching the ball into Hanover territory, but a costly fumble, recovered by Hanover’s Liam Flynn, put the ball back in Shisler’s hands.
It took the Indians three plays to capitalize on the turnover as Rogers joined the scoring action with a 31-yard touchdown run up the middle, extending the Hanover lead to 20-0.
After another stalled Viking possession, Shisler continued to show off his arm strength, connecting with Jeff Wheeler on a 48-yard touchdown play as the Indians scored in less than 15 seconds to take a 27-0 lead into the break.
55 seconds removed from halftime, Rogers took a handoff 21 yards for a touchdown, extending the Hanover lead to 34-0.
After a Triton turnover on downs at the Hanover 28, Rogers continued to be a thorn in the Vikings’ side, busting up the middle 28 yards for his second touchdown in less than two minutes.
Rogers’ fourth score of the night with 5:34 remaining in the third made it 48-0.
Ryan Boutin capped the Indian scoring with a 5-yard touchdown burst. Boutin’s 50-yard run on the previous play keyed the drive.
Hanover’s offensive line, spearheaded by captains Patrick Flynn, Matt Hughes and Tim Mullane, was superb from the outset of this one.
“They fired off the ball,” Landolfi said. “They did real well. They have a great defense, they do a bunch of different things, the kids practiced hard all week. The offensive line pulled me into the office before we came and they’re like ‘coach, let us do this, give us the opportunity.'"