(VIDEO) 2016 MIAA Playoffs: Everett Explodes for 62 Points to Advance to D1 Super Bowl
By Nate Weitzer for Mass prep Stars
EVERETT, Mass – All season long, Everett and Xaverian have stood out as the consensus top teams in Division 1, and on Saturday afternoon, the Crimson Tide left no doubt that they are the right challenger to face the two-time defending champion Hawks in the Super Bowl next month.
For the third consecutive week, Everett started fast, scoring touchdowns on its first four possessions, and the Tide never looked back on their way to a 62-33 victory over visiting Andover in the D1 North Final.
“We wanted to get out in front early because we know [Andover] is very explosive,” said Everett head coach John DiBiaso. “I thought our offensive line did a great job. Marvens [Fedna] sprained his ankle, but the other guys stepped up and [Mike] Sainristil made some big, big plays.”
Everett’s lead back Fedna set the tone with a 27-yard rushing touchdown (video below) in the first quarter.
Only took one minute and 3 running plays for Everett to open the scoring. Marvens Fedna 27-yard TD here pic.twitter.com/YaqZiXGFVz— Nate Weitzer (@nweitzer7) November 12, 2016
After the Tide’s defense held, Sainristil (3 receptions, 102 yards, 3 total TDs) took a screen pass 58 yards for another score, and then backup running back Jacob Miller scored from two yards out.
Mike Sainristil with a 58-yard TD gave Everett an 13-0 lead.
Bruising back Charles Jenkins (7 carries, 166 yards, 3 TDs) added a fourth score in the first quarter and the Tide seemed firmly in control up 27-7 after 11 minutes of play.
Andover responded when quarterback E.J. Perry (21-of-45, 342 passing yards, 3 TDs, 3 INT; 15 rush, 141 yards, 2 TDs) found Joe Rockwell for a 10-yard score, but Everett immediately struck back when Sainristil took the ensuing kickoff back 93 yards for a score to make it 33-14.
The Crimson Tide went into the half up 41-20, yet the visiting Golden Warriors seemed to have some momentum after a strong second quarter. That all changed when Sainristil intercepted Perry on the second play of the third quarter and returned it 33 yards for his third touchdown of the day to put any thoughts of a comeback to bed.
“We said that we had to be more aggressive on defense,” DiBiaso explained about the adjustments his team made at halftime. “We had given [Andover] a little too much room and we didn’t want to sit back and let them pick us apart. So, we tightened it up a little.”
UConn bound quarterback Jordan McAfee '17 celebrated his 18th birthday in fashion, quarterbacking Everett to a return trip to the Super Bowl. McAfee finished with 177 yards passing and a score.
Moving on to a Thanksgiving rivalry game against Masconomet and another huge tilt against Xaverian in the D1 Super Bowl, DiBiaso added, “The offense is clicking on all cylinders right now. We’ve got two big tests and we just have to get healthy and rested ahead of those challenges.”
Stars Who Shined
Mike Sainristil ‘19 WR/DB – A true triple threat, Sainristil made game-changing plays on offense, defense and special teams to help Everett avoid a close game against No. 7 Andover.
The sophomore made most of the Andover defense miss on a well-blocked screen pass in the first quarter, and displayed impressive patience while waiting for a hole to open on his 93-yard return touchdown, but his interception for a touchdown might have been the single biggest play of the game.
“During the first half I wasn’t playing well on the ball, but we walked into the locker room and coach said to bring your focus and play,” Sainristil said.
“The first play of the second half, [Andover] ran an arrow, and [defensive back] Jason Maitre said, ‘they’re going to run it again,’ so I cheated up, I read [Cedric Gillette]’s hips and I broke downhill on the ball and I was able to find the end zone from there.”
Helber ‘18 OL – While Everett’s three primary backs deserve credit for their impressive lines. Marvens Fedna (7 carries, 61 yards, TD), Jacob Miller (9 carries, 59 yards, 2 TDs) and Charles Jenkins were all the beneficiaries of elite offensive line play.
Listed at 6-foot-5, 280 pounds, the Brazilian Helber led the charge with surprising mobility and emphatic dominance at the point of attack.
When the Crimson Tide went to a Double Wing set late in the third quarter, Helber was able to pull at times and create huge holes for Miller or Jenkins to blaze through.
Robert Fialli ‘17 LB – Scoring on Andover is easy enough, but teams can only defeat the Golden Warriors when they come up with stops.
Perhaps no player was more integral towards that goal than middle linebacker RJ Fialli, who came up with 3.5 sacks, added several tackles and even scored a two-point conversion on a short pass during the second quarter.
Perry sacked on three consecutive plays. Fialli up to 2.5 sacks on the day, Everett leads 48-20 early Q3 pic.twitter.com/qJcm2Jtu9I— Nate Weitzer (@nweitzer7) November 12, 2016
Fialli, with one of his 3.5 sacks on the day
Lewis Cine ‘19 LB – Another impressive sophomore on Everett’s roster, Lewis and his older brother Ducarmel Cine (LB, ’19) were all over the field in the win.
Both players made several impressive hits as part of the return team, while Cine added five tackels and half of a sack as a linebacker.
Duval Paul ‘17 DL – The Tide’s defensive captain deserves plenty of credit for a stellar all-around effort, as Everett’s first team defense barely gave an inch to an explosive Andover offense.
Paul added 2.5 sacks to the Tide’s impressive total of nine sacks on the evening, as the front seven was able to ignore any threat of a running game and pin their ears back in pursuit of Perry.
Duval Paul up to 2.5 sacks and we're still early in Q2 pic.twitter.com/f3ZqGDMMM2— Nate Weitzer (@nweitzer7) November 12, 2016
Duval Paul with one of his 2.5 sacks.
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