The Chelsea High football team enjoyed a successful Thanksgiving Day morning with a 21-0 victory over Matignon High on a chilly Dilboy Field turf in Somerville.
The victory assured Coach Mike Stellato and his Red Devils of a winning season, concluding their 2013 campaign with a fine 6-5 record which saw Chelsea qualify for the first-ever MIAA playoffs. The win also made it two straight Turkey Day victories in a row for Chelsea over Matignon, which plays in the Small Division of the Catholic Central Conference.
The Red Devils won the game on both sides of the line of scrimmage, parlaying a stubborn defense with an offensive performance that at times was dominating.
Although the teams were scoreless through the first quarter, the Red Devils gave an indication of things to come when their defense stifled Matignon’s offense, while the CHS offense moved from it own 45 to the Matignon 18 before the drive petered out.
The Chelsea D stood even taller in the second frame, holding firm at its own five yard line to keep Matignon off the scoreboard. The staunch defensive stand placed the momentum squarely on Chelsea’s side of the ball. Quarterback Mark Anthony Williams and the Chelsea offense took over, marching the full 95 yards for a touchdown before the half ended. Williams found Yvad Rosado for a three yard TD pass to cap the drive and Jeffrey Mejia kicked the PAT for a 7-0 Red Devil lead at the intermission.
“We got some tough running from Sammy Rivera and outstanding blocking by Kalvin Duran and Yvad Rosado that opened up running lanes for our running game,” said Stellato of the key ingredients to the long drive.
Chelsea stopped Matignon to start the third period and then went on another drive with the junior backfield duo of Rosado and Rivera doing most of the heavy-lifting. Sammy R. went over on a nine-yard burst and another PAT kick by Mejia extended the CHS advantage to 14-0.
The Chelsea defense continued its fine work in the final frame to preserve its fourth shutout of the season. Williams applied the icing to the Red Devils’ victory cake with a 49 yard scamper on a play on which the junior signal-caller made a great read to break into daylight. Mejia’s third upright-splitter of the day accounted for the 21-0 final tally.
“It was a great team victory,” said Stellato, who praised the offensive work of Rosado, Rivera, senior running back Anthony Cuellar, junior center Francisco Mercedes, and sophomore end Nelson Vega.
On defense, the coach lauded the performances of junior defensive end Lucas De Oliveira, junior defensive end Adriel Rodriguez, junior defensive end Josue Theosmy, senior linebacker Josue Sanchez, sophomore defensive tackle Dennys Hernandez, and junior linebacker Jomael Dejesus.
With their final mark of 6-5, Stellato’s crew completed a nice reversal of their 2-8 2012 campaign. And with only two seniors departing, 2014 looms as a big year for the CHS football program.
“It was a great way to end our season and go into the off-season on a positive note,” said Stellato. “I was very happy for our two seniors to end their careers on a win. We hope to build on this to keep us motivated going into the 2014 season. I would like to thank my coaches and players for all the hard work and dedication they have put into our program.”