As Thanksgiving Day football unfolds across the country, we’ll round up the results from the biggest games right here, starting with the one that determines pride across two Northeastern states.
STATE LINE GAME: Easton (Penn.) 16, Phillipsburg (N.J.) 13
Make it three straight for Easton, which scraped out another narrow victory in the annual Turkey Day grudge match to end all Turkey Day grudge matches. This one may end up being best known for the brawl that erupted in the final minute, with the game decided after a final Easton defensive stand. With Easton taking kneel downs Phillipsburg defensive players rushed the line and a melee ensued, with the referees running off the final minute once order was restored.
After taking a 9-6 lead into halftime, Easton scored on a one-yard touchdown run from running back Nahjee Adams with 10 minutes remaining to stretch the lead to 16-6. Phillipsburg answered, cutting the lead back to a field goal on a touchdown pass from Ben Ries to Robert Martin, but that was as close as the Stateliners could get.
The win pushes Easton’s final 2019 mark to 8-5 while Phillipsburg’s loss leaves the Stateliners at 8-3.
MARYLAND’S HOLY WAR: Calvert Hall 33, Loyola Blakefield 10
The 100th edition of Maryland’s Holy War ended just as the previous five did … with Calvert Hall celebrating a decisive victory in the game played at Towson University.
Cole Herbert led Calvert Hall with three rushing touchdowns and a fumble recovery on defense as the Cardinals built up a 27-3 lead and never looked back. The victory marked the sixth straight for Calvert Hall in the historic series and narrowed Loyola’s overall advantage to 49-43-8.
YE OLDE BALL GAME (CONN.): Norwich Free Academy 49, New London 12
NFA dominated the 158th meeting between the two schools from neighboring Connecticut seaport towns, cruising to a 37-point victory against the Whalers that clinched a Connecticut Class LL state playoff berth in the process.
Wide receiver Damien Bleau led NFA with three touchdown catches in a game that was moved to NFA’s turf field on Wednesday. NFA’s victory pushes the Wildcats to 7-3 entering the playoffs while New London dropped to 5-7.
OLD FIRM FRIENDS (MASS.): Winchester 14, Woburn 7
Winchester proved too tough for their archrivals in a game that was tight and then devolved into a mess as the rain picked up in the fourth quarter.
Perhaps driven by the weather, much of the game was contested on the ground, with players from stars from both teams breaking through landmark moments during the contest: Winchester quarterback Tommy Degnan crossed the 1,000-yard rushing threshold on a 58-yard carry, pushing him above 1,000 yards passing and rushing on the season; Sachems running back Symon Sathler countered by crossing the 1,000-yard rushing mark himself in the third quarter.
The win improved Winchester to 9-2 on the season, the program’s first nine-win season since 2009 per the Daily Times Chronicle. Woburn wrapped up the campaign at 5-6.
TURKEY WHERE DREAMS ARE MADE (N.Y.): Xavier Prep 40, Fordham Prep 14
After a tight first half, the 97th Turkey Bowl in New York City was one-way traffic in the third quarter, with the Knights racing out to a 34-7 lead and then playing out the string.
Running back Andrew Scariano led Xavier with three touchdown runs, including two shortly after the Knights recovered Rams fumbles as Xavier made the most of Fordham’s mistakes.
The game played at Aviator Field in Brooklyn wrapped up a 4-5 campaign for Xavier and 3-7 season for Fordham.
D.C. TURKEY BOWL: Dunbar 21, Woodson 12
Dunbar captured the DCIAA title with a decisive victory in a hard-fought game against perennial Turkey Bowl contestant Woodson. Dunbar players celebrated capturing the 50th annual Turkey Bowl by wildly waving flags on the field and dancing, celebrating a title years in the making.
Woodson mounted a late comeback, scoring a touchdown that could have brought it within a score if it successfully executed a two-point conversion. It didn’t, and Dunbar was able to get the ball back and hold off Woodson’s challenge from there.
The loss marked the end of the road for a Woodson team honoring late linebacker Akhii Washington, who was murdered in July before the season.
SHOW ME THE TURKEY (MO.): Kirkwood 42, Webster Groves 28
It was closer than many have been, but Kirkwood still pulled away for a seventh-straight season to win Missouri’s lone Turkey Day game. Kirkwood got an astonishing five touchdowns from wide receiver Jay Maclin, a Missouri commit, as it pulled away from a game Webster Groves team that kept within striking distance until the fourth quarter.
As reported by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Maclin caught seven passes for 198 yards and four scores and intercepted Webster Groves quarterback Enrique Quinones and returned it 70 yards for fifth.
Kirkwood finished the season 7-5 while Webster Groves dropped to 5-6. The loss further narrowed the Statesman’s lead in the series to 54-50-7.