Londonderry Lancers Football '16

Fri, Oct 14, 2016 07:00 PM @ Salem
Team Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Final
Londonderry 0 10 7 0 17
Salem 7 7 7 8 29

Sibanda, Salem hold off Londonderry

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SALEM, N.H. — It wasn’t its best performance, but the end result was perhaps the most significant of the season for the Salem football team Friday night.

By holding off Londonderry 29-17, the Blue Devils improved to 6-1 on the season and qualified for the Division 1 playoffs for the second straight year with two regular season games still left to play.

“It’s a nice feeling and the kids have worked hard for it,” said Salem coach Rob Pike. “We had to work for this.”

With the loss, Londonderry fell to 1-6, but the Lancers gave Salem all it could handle. It took two long runs in the second half, by Josh Sibanda and Matt Soldano, to seal the victory.

Sibanda, a junior, had another terrific day, gaining 181 yards on 17 carries, going over 1,000 yards for the season at 1,064, and scoring twice to remain the area’s scoring leader with 18 touchdowns.

His first TD, a two-yarder in the first quarter, capped Salem’s best drive of the game and gave the Blue Devils a 7-0 lead they would never relinquish.

Londonderry came back with a 28-yard field goal by Pat Zepf, making it 7-3 early in the second quarter seven plays after recovering a fumble.

But the Devils quickly made it 14-3 when Soldano hit Domenic Pacy from six yards out after Zach Morris had a 42-yard kickoff return and Sibanda followed with a 29-yard run. But the Lancers responded when Jake Stevens capped a 69-yard drive with a six-yard TD pass to Cam MacDonald, making it 14-10 at halftime.

Salem’s offense in the second half basically amounted to two scoring plays, Sibanda’s 64-yard sprint on the first play of the third quarter and Soldano’s 51-yard bootleg in the fourth quarter.

Other than that, the Lancers — behind the passing of Stevens — dominated the second half (running off 34 plays to just seven for Salem midway through the fourth quarter), completing 13 of 17 passes for 150 yards and a touchdown, a 56-yard strike to Brandon Radford moments after Sibanda’s run to open the third quarter.

Using a bend-but-not break defense, Salem yielded yardage but, when the chips were down, it stopped Londonderry’s final three drives, one on a pair of penalties, one because of a fumble and one on a fourth down sack.

Applying serious pressure and making tackles all over the field was junior linebacker Ben Genest while Adam Maroun, Morris and Ben Emerson were among those making stops in key situations.

“I don’t think we were expecting that much passing,” said Genest. “We were missing our safety (James LeBlond, out with an ankle injury) and they (Londonderry) made some nice plays, but we got them when we had to.”

Game Statistics:

First Quarter

S — Josh Sibanda 2 run (Zach Gibbons kick), 6:15

Second Quarter

L — Pat Zeopf 28 FG, 8:33

S — Domenic Pacy 6 pass from Matt Soldano (Gibbons kick), 7:26

L — Cameron MacDonald 8 pass from Jake Stevens (Zepf kick), 2:24

Third Quarter

S — Sibanda 64 run (Gibbons kick), 11:46

L — Brandon Radford 56 pass from Stevens (Zepf kick), 10:02

Fourth Quarter

S — Soldano 51 run (Adam Maroun run), 7:22



RUSHING: Salem (34-285) — Josh Sibanda 17-181, Adam Maroun 7-13, Domenic Pacy 4-7, Matt Soldano 2-66, Josh Maroun 1-6, Ben Genest 2-11, Zach Morris 1-1; Londonderry (31-63) — Ben Johnson 13-19, Stevens 14-38, Eric Doran 3-7, Alex Boucher 1-(-1)

PASSING: Salem — Soldano 3-6-0, 28; Londonderry — Stevens 19-32-0, 226

RECEIVING: Salem — Pacy 1-6, Adam Maroun 1-19, Sibanda 1-3; Londonderry — Adam Wilkinson 2-21, Jake Holland 4-30, Camerom MacDonald 5-47, Connor Dubois 6-71, Ben Johnson 1-1, Brandon Radford 1-56

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