Georgetown Royals Football '06

Thu, Nov 23, 2006 10:00 AM @ Manchester Essex
Team Final
Georgetown 28
Manchester Essex 27
Matt Sweet, right, tries to block Georgetown cornerback Nadjee Harrigan's attempt to stop Hornet Pat Orlando during yesterdays game at Hyland Field. The Hornets were defeated, 28-27, by the Royals. » Deborah Hammond, Staff Photographer

Georgetown topples Manchester

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Friday, August, 24 By Dan Guttenplan
Staff writer

MANCHESTER | Joseph M. Hyland Field is now closed! Unfortunately for host Manchester Essex, Georgetown saw to it that it was closed on a depressing note.

Commonwealth Conference Small champion Manchester Essex will enter the playoffs with a loss fresh in its memory bank. Georgetown (5-5) will enter the offseason with a good feeling about how it battled through adversity throughout the year and finished the campaign with a memorable upset on the road.

Georgetown upset Commonwealth Small champion Hornets, 28-27, at the last game ever at Hyland Field. The Hornets will play Ipswich in the opening round of the playoffs Tuesday night. The Royals relied on the left arm and legs of sophomore quarterback Joe Esposito, who tallied 114 yards passing and 74 rushing. Esposito completed 9 of 16 passes, including a 9-yard touchdown strike to Brandon Wade.

"It's the best feeling in the world to beat the conference champs on their field on Thanksgiving," said Esposito, who was pressed into action late in the preseason when Corey Wade suffered a season-ending injury. "It's the greatest moment of my life. I'm so happy for our seniors."

With a stretch of mud running the entire length of the field between the hash marks, the normally pass-happy clubs had to rely on the run. Manchester Essex (8-3) outgained Georgetown on the ground, 276-125, behind Paul Martyn, who gained 165 yards on 14 carries.

The difference proved to be PATs. Wade, the Georgetown kicker, was 4 for 4 on extra point attempts. The Hornets failed on two two-point conversion attempts, converting one, and added a Sam Cohen extra point.

Hornets sophomore quarterback Pat Orlando completed 9 of 21 passes for 81 yards. It looked like he might carry his club to victory, but Georgetown defensive back Tim Lynch thwarted a fourth-quarter drive with an interception on his team's own 20.

"I was totally confident we could compete with Manchester Essex," Royals coach Matt Bouchard said. "It's huge for the program because we beat a playoff team."

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