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Make no mistake, Cohasset proves its mettle by toppling Wahconah for Division 7 Super Bowl crown

Wahconah's defense had little luck stopping Cohasset's dynamic quarterback Will Baker in the Division 7 Super Bowl.Barry Chin/Globe Staff

FOXBOROUGH — While the season opened with consecutive defeats, the Cohasset football team went out on top Wednesday night at Gillette Stadium, capping its 10-game win streak with a 27-12 victory over Wahconah in the Division 7 Super Bowl to secure the program’s second state title.

“It was just about eliminating mistakes,” Cohasset coach Peter Afanasiw said. “I told [the players] in the locker room today, you look at our schedule, and as soon as we stopped beating ourselves, nobody could touch us.”

Cohasset (10-2) allowed just 7.2 points per game over nine wins to reach the state final, then held a powerhouse Wahconah offense which came in averaging 32.7 points per game in check.


Junior quarterback Will Baker returned from a two-game absence (shoulder) to spark the Skippers offense by rushing for 124 yards and a 30-yard touchdown in the opening quarter.

Wahconah (11-1) answered with a pair of touchdown passes from Ryan Scott, including a 39-yard score to Brad Noyes with 22 seconds left in the first half, but the Cohasset defense didn’t break the rest of the way.

“All week, we’ve been working super hard on our scouting,” Cohasset senior linebacker James Appleton said. “We were ready for [Wahconah]. We had all their plays, and we were ready to get physical with them.”

The Cohasset sideline was fired up as Liam Appleton broke loose for a long gain in the second half.Barry Chin/Globe Staff

Cohasset held Wahconah’s star running back Jonah Smith, who entered the Super Bowl with 1,864 rushing yards and 23 touchdowns, to 44 yards on 12 carries in the first half. In the third quarter, Smith limped off the field with an apparent ankle injury and didn’t return.

Seeking some breathing room in a 14-12 contest, Cohasset dialed up the perfect play call on third and 10 in the red zone. Baker (4 for 9, 82 yards, TD) dropped back and zipped a screen pass around an oncoming defender to find sophomore Liam Appleton (13 carries, 86 yards) wide open for a 14-yard touchdown pass, expanding the lead to 21-12.


“I just thought touchdown,” the younger Appleton said. “I knew that play. We ran it once all year and we were saving it for a big moment. I knew it would go.”

Will Baker (17) leads the celebration on the Cohasset sideline in the late stages.Barry Chin/Globe Staff

Earlier this fall, Afanasiw told the Globe that “iron sharpens iron” when asked about the success of South Shore League teams this postseason.

Randolph won the D8 Super Bowl earlier Wednesday over Hull, Abington or Rockland will be crowned D6 champion Friday, and a South Shore representative from the Patriot League (Duxbury or Scituate) will take home the D4 state title Friday night.

Playing some of those programs, and taking a loss to Abington in Week 1, helped Cohasset prepare for this moment. Wahconah mostly won in blowout fashion all year, while Cohasset’s three playoff games were all decided in the fourth quarter, giving the Skippers the experience they needed to pull away.

“Back in the day, in the South Shore League, you’d have to go 9-0 to get to The Show,” Afanasiw said. “[A record of] 8-1 didn’t cut it. And now you’re starting to see what happens when more teams from our league get in. It’s an excellent football [region] and league.

“For these [Cohasset] kids, I couldn’t be happier, for them to have something to hang their hat on amidst all the chaos. They’re having a lot of fun and that’s what high school athletics is all about.”


Cohasset 27, Wahconah 12

Division 7 Super Bowl

at Gillette Stadium, Foxborough

Cohasset (10-2) 7 7 0 13 — 27

Wahconah (11-1) 6 6 0 0 — 12

C — Will Baker 30 run (Thomas Hansen kick)

W — Owen Salvatore 40 pass from Ryan Scott (rush failed)

C — Josh Burke 22 run (Thomas Hansen kick)

W — Brad Noyes 39 pass from Ryan Scott (rush failed)

C — Liam Appleton 14 pass from Will Baker (Thomas Hansen kick)

C — Michael Donahue 2 run (kick failed)


RUSHING — C, Will Baker 23-124, Liam Appleton 13-86, Josh Burke 4-46, Michael Donahue 2-4; W, Jonah Smith 18-81, Doug Collins 4-20, Ryan Scott 6-3, Noah Poirier 1-1.

PASSING — C, Will Baker 9-4—82; W, Ryan Scott 24-12—159.

RECEIVING — C, Michael Donahue 2-60, Liam Appleton 1-14, Thomas Hansen 1-8; W, Brad Noyes 2-54, Owen Salvatore 2-44, Ben Noyes 2-29, Scott Duma 4-22, Jonah Smith 1-6, Drew Wendling 1-4.

Cohasset's stout defense stepped up again to slow down Wahconah and quarterback Ryan Scott.Barry Chin/Globe Staff