Wahconah falls behind early, loses to Agawam in D-IV semifinal
AGAWAM >> A look at the total yardage for each squad would indicate a close game between Wahconah and Agawam in the Western Massachusetts Division IV tournament semifinals yesterday.
But it was the top-seeded Brownies, with 428 total yards, that scored four of their six offensive touchdowns on the first play of their respective drives en route to a 48-14 victory over the fourth-seeded and three-time Western Mass defending champion Warriors.
Wahconah, meanwhile, had to grind out its 400 yards of total offense over long possessions, leading to three turnovers and other possessions that didn't finish in the end zone.
"They executed better than we did tonight," Wahconah coach Gary Campbell Jr. said. "Unfortunately those big plays just got us into a big hole. We were able to put some offense together. We just couldn't stop them. That's been our issue all year."
Marcus Williams, who scored on a 78-yard touchdown run for Agawam's first play from scrimmage, rushed for 130 yards and two touchdowns for the Brownies (8-0). Nick Scuderi, who rushed for a 61-yard touchdown on the first play of the second half for an Agawam team that had been eliminated in the last two Western Mass championship games by Wahconah, finished with 96 yards on the ground.
"Coach told me before that I was getting the ball that first play," Williams said. "I was a little nervous at first, but I knew I could pull through. The hole was supposed to go inside, I didn't see it, so I bounced it out and it was wide open."
Other first-play touchdowns from the Brownies included an eight-yard scamper after a recovered fumble by Chris Morassi, who finished with 42 yards on the ground, and a 67-yard touchdown run by Dominic Grasseti in the fourth quarter . He had 69 yards rushing in all.
That's in addition to a 51-yard interception return for a touchdown by Jacob Root late in the first half for Agawam.
While all 428 yards for the Brownies came on the ground, Wahconah quarterback Will Genaway finished with 272 yards through the air. Because of the early deficit, he was forced to throw it a lot, finishing 12-for-36 with two touchdowns and two interceptions.
Evan Garvey had 164 yards receiving with a touchdown for the Warriors (5-4) while Matt Salvatore finished with 83 yards receiving and a touchdown. Tyler Cataldi led the Warriors with 92 yards rushing.
Wahconah, which originally did not make the field of four teams in Western Mass Division IV but was added Monday morning after a fixed calculation put it above Northampton for the final spot, got off to a tough start after a three-and-out was followed by the aforementioned Williams touchdown.
After a Warriors missed field goal and the teams traded punts, Agawam quarterback Troy Galleraini scored on a 24-yard touchdown run to make it 13-0 in favor of the Brownies.
Wahconah got on the board with an ensuing 70-yard touchdown pass from Genaway to Salvatore, but Agawam eventually answered late in the half with two touchdowns in the final 2:30. The first was Morassi's 8-yard run while Root's pick-six followed.
Trailing 27-6 at the half, Wahconah allowed Scuderi to score on the the first play of the third quarter. The Warriors, eventually trailing 41-6, scored their final touchdown with 8:38 left in the fourth quarter when Genaway hit Garvey on a 50-yard touchdown pass on 4th and 22.
"It's good to represent Wahconah football," Campbell said. "We're three-time defending Western Mass champ, that's nothing to be sneezed at about. And we've beaten them twice, so I'm sure they were pretty sick of us."
Wahconah will conclude its season next with a still-to-be-announced consolation game as the team looks to finish above .500. Agawam advances to the Western Mass Division IV final, where it will play Chicopee Comp.
A-Marcus Williams 78 run (pass failed), 9:45.
A-Troy Galleraini 24 run (Aiden Page kick), 9:38.
W-Matt Salvatore 70 pass from Will Genaway (run failed), 8:33.
A-Chris Morassi 8 run (Page kick), 2:30.
A-Jacob Root 51 interception return (Page kick), 1:09.
A-Nick Scuderi 61 run (Page kick), 10:45.
A-Williams 9 run (Page kick), 2:28.
W-Evan Garvey 50 pass from Genaway (Cole Morrison pass from Genaway), 8:38.
A-Dominic Grasseti 67 run (Page kick), 8:22.
RUSHING-Wahconah: Tyler Cataldi 21-92, Matt Salvatore 2-10, Evan Garvey 2-9, Andrew Carlson 2-4, Tanner Campbell 1-2, Jeremy Girard 1-(-2), Will Genaway 5-(-8). Agawam: Marcus Williams 6-130, Nick Scuderi 9-96, Dominic Grasseti 4-69, Troy Galleraini 3-60, Chris Morassi 3-42, Max Molta 3-31.
PASSING-Wahconah: Will Genaway 12-36 272, Jeremy Girard 1-1 21. Agawam: Troy Galleraini 0-1 0.
RECEIVING-Wahconah: Evan Garvey 6-164, Matt Salvatore 3-83, Wyatt Schleicher 1-21, Dylan Melle 1-15, Tyler Cataldi 2-10.
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