MIDDLEBORO — In the days leading up to what would eventually be dubbed a de facto battle for the South Shore League title, there was a little bit of controversy as to who should be playing for supremacy atop the conference.
After the events of Thursday night, it appears the debate is officially over. When all was said and done, the Middleboro Sachems let it be known that they are one step ahead of the rest of their competition. Senior quarterback Timmy Crowley had 21 carries for 177 yards, finishing with five total touchdowns as Middleboro overcame an early deficit before pulling away for a convincing 48-25 rout of Abington.
“I do believe that we are the best team in the South Shore League,” Crowley said afterward. “We came into this game focused on us, playing on our game. We didn’t care about all that negative talk, negative media. We just came out and balled.”
Middleboro was named the South Shore League’s Sullivan division winner last week after winning to improve to 3-1. Rockland fans claimed that their program deserved a claim to that title, as their program boasted a record of 5-0. Because the Sachems had the tougher strength-of-schedule, and because the schools had to skip their originally scheduled game due to COVID protocol, the tiebreakers favored Middleboro.
On the other side of things, Abington had already clinched the South Shore League Tobin title, and the Green Wave certainly played like it early on Thursday. As the opening quarter came to a conclusion, junior Drew Donovan corralled a 15-yard touchdown pass from Eddie Reilly, as Abington took a 17-7 advantage.
However, Middleboro (4-1) would respond with force. With 8:17 remaining in the first half, Crowley got his day started with a 3-yard touchdown run by bowling right up the middle and into the end zone on a keeper. Matt Farley hit the ensuing extra point, and the Sachems were only trailing, 17-14.
Moments later, the Green Wave watched as a promising drive came to a sudden halt, as the Sachems forced a fumble deep in their own territory. After recovering, Middleboro staged a long drive. With 55 ticks left in the second quarter, Crowley broke off a 4-yard touchdown rush, as the Sachems took their first lead at 20-17.
On the following kickoff, the Sachems forced yet another fumble, recovering at the Abington 31.
From there, the floodgates opened. Crowley proceeded to rush for his third touchdown of the stanza with 16 seconds to play in the half, as he leaped over the pile at the goal line to make it a 27-17 contest.
With 5:55 to go in the third, Crowley decided to get a little more active in the passing game, as he lobbed a toss to the corner of the end zone. Senior Connor Fahey hauled it in for an 8-yard touchdown catch, and the rout was on as the Sachems took a 34-17 advantage.
Middleboro would pull as far ahead as 48-17 with 10:17 to play in regulation, scoring 41 unanswered to seal things.
“Let’s be honest, Crowley’s a dude right now,” Middleboro coach Pat Kingman said. “He might be the most dominant player in the league right now. He just took the game over for us.”
Reilly finished with 127 yards passing, notching two touchdowns for Abington.
Middleboro will close its season with a nonleague tilt against Apponequet next week.
“We worked hard for four years to get here,” said Crowley. “People can say what they want to say. They can say this isn’t (a South Shore League title), that there should be an asterisk next to the season, whatever they want. But we worked our tails off all season, and we came and won.”