WEST NEWBURY — Asked to describe the final moments Saturday, Pentucket linebacker Josh Wesolowski responded with one word.
“Terrifying,” he said.
With the Sachems leading by six points with 1:18 to go, Triton marched 80 yards to the Pentucket 11-yard line with 12 seconds to go.
But Luke Strangman knocked down one pass and on a completed pass on the next play a pack of Sachems pounced on Justin Spillane to keep him in bounds at the 7 as time ran out to give Pentucket a thrilling 19-13 victory over their Thanksgiving rival.
“A win against Triton is always huge,” said quarterback Ryan Kuchar. “We knew we were the underdog in this one, but we love that. It feels weird not going home for a turkey dinner after beating Triton, but this was a good one.”
The Sachems jumped on the Vikings early. They took the opening kickoff and, four plays later, Jeff Porter sprinted in from 37 yards out to give the Green a 7-0 lead.
“That first drive just set the pace for the game,” said lineman Reid Garrant. “We knew it was going to be a tough game, so to be able to go out there and put in a quick touchdown really made a big difference.”
Triton cut the lead to one point, but Pentucket immediately responded with a 10-play drive that Kuchar finished off with a 5-yard touchdown pass to Andrew Noyes to make it 13-6. The Sachems extended the lead midway through the third when Kuchar ran nearly the exact same play, this time finding Liam Corkery for a 5-yard score.
“Both times I saw the guy come open in the back of the end zone and threw it to them,” said Kuchar. “Those were big scores.”
Triton scored to reduce the lead to one with 2:39 left in the game, but the Sachems recovered the on-sides kick and seemed to ice it with 1:18 left when Kuchar booted a perfect punt that was downed at the Vikings’ 10-yard line.