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Manchester Turkey Bowl: Seniors go out with a bang

New Hampshire Union Leader

November 23. 2017 8:55PM

Central's Trevor Jawidzik is tackled by West's Paul Grossweiler during the annual Manchester Turkey Bowl football game held at Gill Stadium in Manchester on Thursday. (THOMAS ROY/UNION LEADER)

MANCHESTER — Perhaps no one better exemplified the spirit of this year’s Manchester Turkey Bowl than senior Matt Gilroy, a four-year member of the Central High School football program who saw limited time at quarterback this season — until Thursday’s game.

Not only did Gilroy take a significant number of snaps from behind center in Central’s 47-22 victory, he caught a pass from sophomore Tyler Gilroy, Matt’s younger brother, and recovered a fumble in the first game he was used as a middle linebacker. Matt’s 6-yard touchdown pass to senior Alex Guillemette capped the game’s scoring.

“It was tough not getting on the field with Hawkom (Central starting QB Alex Hawkom), but he’s been my best friend all year so it’s been a lot of fun,” Matt Gilroy said. “I’m just glad I could show what I could do out here.”

It appeared to be a good game all-around as West, which went 1-7 during the Division II regular season, exited Gill Stadium feeling good about itself as well. The Blue Knights trailed 13-0 at halftime and 26-14 with 3:30 remaining in the game before things got sloppy in the final minutes.

Junior running back Jaymeson Maheux scored three TDs for the Blue Knights.

“I thought we played well,” West coach Tom Bozoian said. “We felt real good about this. We’re just trying to make strides and I think this was a huge stride for us. A lot of kids who played today were sophomores. That’s a positive.

“The kids really stepped their game up. If we would have played like this against a couple of the Division II teams we would have been in the game a little more.”

After West made it 26-14 on Maheux’s 6-yard TD run and Tyrese Harris’ two-point conversion, Central responded with Javell Desir’s 70-yard kickoff return for a score.

Maheux scored his third TD on a 37-yard run with 2:38 left, but Jeremy Chandler returned the ensuing kickoff 57 yards for a touchdown before Gilroy tossed his TD pass with 22.4 seconds left.

“Matt has done an amazing job for us all four years trying to be a better quarterback,” Central coach Ryan Ray said. “At linebacker he was flying around. He was hitting people. He was having a great time.

“For Central football, that’s definitely what Thanksgiving morning is all about. Send out the seniors the right way and just letting people have some fun. It’s about the younger guys taking a step and it’s about the seniors.”

Hawkom (3-yard run) and Kyle Gauthier (1-yard run) scored first-quarter touchdowns for Central, which completed its season with a 6-4 record. Desir’s 25-yard touchdown run two plays into the third quarter extended Central’s lead to 20-0.

Maheux’s first touchdown, a 7-yard run, cut Central’s lead to 20-6 with 4:6 seconds left in the third quarter, but the Little Green regained a 20-point lead on Chandler’s 5-yard TD run with 9:26 to play.

Several of Thursday’s conversion attempts were interesting. Central’s Mike Tessier attempted a drop kick on a PAT that came up short, and two linemen — Central’s Sidi Hassan and West’s Kevin Johnson — each scored a two-point conversion.

“It’s a reunion for a lot of the players,” Matt Gilroy said. “It’s a chance to come out and have fun. That’s what we do here. Go out with a bang, all the seniors having fun doing their thing.”

“(Getting a win) is always good, too. The turkey tastes better that way.”

rbrown@unionleader.comNashua South 55, Nashua North 21

Sean Holland threw three touchdown passes in the first half and ran for another as Nashua South knocked off Nashua North 55-21 in the Nashua Turkey Bowl on Wednesday night at Stellos Stadium.

Holland threw strikes to Alex Amigo (44, 54 yards), Derek Downing (13 yards) and Tony Agor (54 yards). He also ran in a 3-yard score. Jaylen Pacheco added a 2-yard TD, Jarrett Bieren notched a 1-yard TD run, and Saul Pascual had a 2-yard scoring run for South.

North got a 13-yard TD pass from Mike Loveless to Matt Wall, a 31-yard scoring run by Curtis Harris and a 1-yard run TD from Kevin Maldonado.

South finished 8-3 overall; North finished 5-5.

Monadnock 20, Keene 6

Monadnock of Swanzey, which was edged by Campbell on Saturday in the Division III state final, beat Division I Keene on three Chandler Matson touchdowns.

The running back ran for 1-yard and 17-yard scores and caught a 23-yard TD pass from Tim Santaw as the Huskies finished 11-1.

Keene scored on a 12-yard pass from Sean Corrigan to Tyler Patch.

Keene finished 0-10 overall.

NHIAA Manchester