QUINCY — In a riveting second-half rally fueled by a 17-player senior class, North Quincy pulled out a 15-12 win Quincy for the City Championship trophy in their 89th meeting at Veterans Stadium Thursday
Senior Hunter MacIsaac scored on a 6-yard TD run with 1.8 seconds left in the third and junior Nate Caldwell hauled in a 10-yard score from senior Cooper Hansen with 1:22 remaining to finish off the comeback for the Raiders (5-5).
“This is definitely the most exciting game that I’ve ever coached,” North Quincy coach Ryan Craig said.
And he was able to enjoy the treasured moment with his son, Craig, who delivered 99 yards on 17 rushes in his final game for North Quincy.
“With all his group of friends, this is a special group of seniors, and I really wanted the game for them,” he said. “They went out and earned it.”
Down by a score, North Quincy (5-5) orchestrated a 96-yard touchdown drive with 4:20 remaining to win the championship for the second straight time. Quincy leads the series 48-36-5.
“It was awesome. We were backed up in our own end zone to start off that drive,” said MacIsaac (seven rushes, 34 yards).
“In the huddle, we were just talking to each other like ‘We’re going to do this – we’re going to drive down the field, and we’re going to score. This is something we’re going to remember for the rest of our lives.’ That’s exactly what we did and I loved every second of it.”
It’s a bittersweet win for the Raiders, and a group that has played together for quite some time.
“It’s been an honor to be coached by my dad, he’s been coaching me since I was playing flag football in the second grade,” Matt Craig said. “It’s so special, we’ll remember this for the rest of our lives.”
The Presidents (4-6) led by two scores with senior Drew Boretti (12-of-17 passing, 130 yards) throwing touchdown passes of 53 yards to junior Jacey Ham and a 14-yard strike to senior Clayton Corley in the third quarter.
The Presidents drove down to the North Quincy 4 in the waning seconds of regulation, but the Raiders held their ground to force the turnover on downs.
“To see it all end here, it’s real bittersweet,” said senior center Brandon Baker. “I’m going to miss these guys, but I’m glad we ended it this way.”
Lenny Rowe can be reached at email@example.com.