FOXBOROUGH – Every time Ashland needed a play in Saturday’s Division 6 Super Bowl, Dom Cavanagh delivered, with his vision, arm, or legs.
A pair of short passes in the first half resulted in touchdowns to classmate Brian Gazard. Then, with the Clockers trailing by a point in the fourth quarter, Cavanagh connected with senior Jake Latessa on a 73-yard catch-and-run, setting up his own 1-yard keeper and an eventual 28-22 win over Bishop Fenwick.
It was a fitting finale for the 6-foot-1-inch, 190-pound Cavanagh, who, in completing 13 of his 21 passes for 270 yards, fired three touchdown passes to lead Ashland (12-1) to its first Super Bowl title since 1995.
“He’s been doing it all year,” said Ashland coach Andrew MacKay, a 2002 grad of the school. “It felt like it was there all day, but whenever we need these boys, we can count on them for sure.”
Cavanagh capped the afternoon with a 5-yarder to senior Kevin Russell, his D6-leading 23rd touchdown pass of the season.
His go-ahead scoring drive was the turning point in a game that had been dormant since late in the first half.
“I thought in the third quarter there we had some opportunities to put a little more distance between us, and just squandered a couple of chances,” said Fenwick coach David Woods. “When you have a great team like that, you can’t give them more chances. That big play to Latessa was the backbreaker.”
The Clockers regained momentum midway through the second quarter, responding with a 31-yard pass from Cavanagh to Gazard.
“It’s special, but it’s not just me, it’s the guys around me that performed today,” said Cavanagh. “That’s just how we wanted to finish the season out, staying headstrong.”
And for Ashland, it looked like the lead would last when 315-pound nose tackle Sean Harding grasped a big pick in Clocker territory. But a roughing the passer penalty negated the interception, leading to the second 15-yard touchdown pass of the quarter from Chrys Wilson to Angel Martinez four plays later.
Bishop Fenwick (10-2) found much of its success in the first half on the ground, compiling 113 rushing yards in the opening 20 minutes. But in the second half, the defense came up big for the Clockers, limiting Fenwick to just 38 rushing yards.
“We just were sloppy early on,” said MacKay. “They toughened up and did an awesome job and our defense won us this game.”
Ashland 28, Bishop Fenwick 22
at Gillette Stadium, Foxborough
Ashland (12-1) 6 7 0 15 — 28
Bishop Fenwick (10-3) 0 14 0 8 — 22
A — Brian Gazard 5 pass from Dom Cavanagh (kick failed)
B — Angel Martinez 15 pass from Chrys Wilson (kick failed)
A — Brian Gazard 31 pass from Dom Cavanagh (Andrew Agostinelli kick)
B — Angel Martinez 15 pass from Chrys Wilson (Stefano Fabiano pass from Chrys Wilson)
A — Dom Cavanagh 1 run (Brian Gazard pass from Dom Cavanagh)
A — Kevin Russell 3 pass from Dom Cavanagh (Andrew Agostinelli kick)
B — Jason Romans 16 pass from Steven Woods (Ethan Gonzalez pass from Steven Woods)
RUSHING — A, Eddie Lopez 9-66, Eddie Braganca 1-6, Jake Latessa 1-3, Olujimi Brown 2-2; B, David Cifuentes 16-62, Angel Martinez 2-56, Tucker Destino 3-20, Chrys Wilson 5-13
PASSING — A, Dom Cavanagh 13-21--270; B, Chrys Wilson 10-21--160, Steven Woods 2-4-50, Jason Romans 0-3.
RECEIVING — A, Jake Latessa 5-117, Brian Gazard 4-61, Jake Merloni 1-44, Kevin Russell 2-34, Brandon Grover 1-14; B, Stefano Fabiano 4-69, Jason Romans 3-37, Angel Martinez 3-45, David Cifuentes 1-15, Jordan Maurice 1-10
Dan Shulman can be reached at email@example.com.