WEST NEWBURY — D.J. Engelke had one regret yesterday: being caught from behind on a 70-yard run that looked to be a sure-fire touchdown.
“I think I got a little ahead of myself there,” said the halfback with a laugh. “I saw two defenders, and I think my mind was going a little faster than my legs and I ended up tripping over my feet.”
That play aside, it was a picture-perfect day for Engelke and the Pentucket football team.
Behind the speedy senior’s 195-yard, two-touchdown day, the top-seeded Sachems dominated every facet of the game on the way to pounding No. 8 Hamilton-Wenham in the quarterfinals of the Division 4 North football tournament yesterday afternoon.
It marked Pentucket’s first postseason victory since beating Apponequet in the 2001 Eastern Mass. Division 4 semifinals.
“This is the first time any of us have ever been to the playoffs, so we wanted to squeeze the most out of this day” said senior co-captain Chris Croteau. “We did that. It was a great game and no one can take that away from us.”
The Sachems will now host No. 5 Watertown in the Division 4 North semifinals on Saturday at 1 p.m. Watertown beat Pentucket’s archrival, No. 4 Triton, 31-22 on Saturday.
“We were so amped up for this game,” said linebacker Josh Wesolowski. “We had some bad starts recently, so we wanted to come out fast. After the first quarter we knew we were playing well.”
Pentucket wasted no time taking control. The Sachems held the Generals to a three-and-out on the first possession of the game, then needed just four plays to take the lead on a 1-yard QB sneak for a touchdown by Ryan Kuchar.
After another 3-and-out by Hamilton-Wenham, the Green and White added to their lead when fullback Andrew Noyes spun in from 10 yards out, and it was 12-0 after each team had run just six plays.