After missing multiple games because of injury, Latin Academy’s Bailey Belony wanted to end his senior season the right way.
The senior did that and more for his Dragons, throwing two touchdown passes, rushing for another, and nabbing an interception in their 32-6 win over the O’Bryant Tigers at Fenway Park on Tuesday night.
“It was one last ride for me,” Belony said. “I just knew I had to go out there, do everything I could, try my best, and give everything I had.”
As much as Belony’s offense fueled the win, the Dragons’ defense stifled O’Bryant (4-5), allowing just 6 total yards in the first half.
“We were flying, we worked as a unit, everyone was bringing everything they had to,” said senior running back Xavier Polanco.
The passing game gave the Dragons (7-4) their first two scores off Belony’s only two completions.
On their first drive, Latin Academy forced a three-and-out from O’Bryant, pushing the Tigers back 8 yards before they punted. On the next drive, Belony found senior Matthew Nguyen in the corner of the end zone on a 25-yard TD strike for an 8-0 lead.
Another three-and-out from the Tigers set up Latin Academy with great field position at its 43. From there, the Dragons marched 43 yards to the O’Bryant 14, where Belony appeared to throw a touchdown to Owen O’Neill that wound up being nullified by a penalty..
That didn’t deter Belony, who came backand found 6-foot-7-inch wideout Brennan Shapiro for an 18-yard touchdown. Belony ran for the 2-point conversion to make it 16-0.
Belony’s interception came in the second quarter, as a pass intended for O’Bryant’s Montavius Zollarcoffer fell into Belony’s hands, setting up Polanco’s 10-yard touchdown run.
The Dragons went back to their ground game in the second half, opening with an 88-yard, 16-play drive that chewed up nine minutes. The Dragons came away empty-handed when they turned it over on downs, but four plays later, O’Neill fell on a mistimed handoff and set up the Dragons just outside the red zone.
Belony showed off his dual-threat ability, running twice for 23 yards, including a 9-yard TD run and hitting O’Neill with the successful 2-point conversion pass to give Latin Academy a 32-0 lead.
Zollarcoffer showed some fight in the second half for the Tigers, as he finished the game with a three-play, 52-yard drive in which he ran for 20 yards, threw a 31-yard pass, and punched it in on a 1-yard TD run to make it 32-6.
It was the first of five games at Fenway Park during Thanksgiving week, which, Polanco said, energized the Dragons.
“Not many people get the opportunity to play at Fenway,” Polanco said. “We were truly blessed to have this opportunity, and we showed it today.”