Methuen Rangers Football '18

Fri, Sep 07, 2018 07:00 PM @ Malden Catholic
Team Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Final
Methuen 8 20 13 0 41
Malden Catholic 0 3 7 6 16

Brutus scores 5 TDs in debut, Methuen rolls past Malden Catholic

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Friday, September, 07 By David Willis
Staff writer

MALDEN — For years, Ricky Brutus had visualized his first Methuen varsity start.
His wildest dreams, however, could never have matched reality on Friday.
“I never imagined it would be like this,” said Brutus. “It was crazy. What an amazing experience!”
Brutus scored five touchdowns — four rushing scored and a punt return TD — as Methuen opened its season by crushing Malden Catholic 41-16.
“We’ve been waiting for this game and it felt so good,” said new Rangers QB Connor Bryant. “We know we lost a lot of stars from last year. We wanted to go out and show our town, school and friends that Methuen football isn’t dead. It was a great first victory.”
The star of the day was Brutus, who finished with 102 rushing yards on 10 carries in just over a half of play.
He took his first carry for 25 yards, and on his third rush he shook a tackler and scored a 7-yard touchdown.
“Amazing feeling,” said Brutus. “It felt like a kiss from my mother right on the cheek.”
From there the junior — who entered the game with three career carries for 11 yards — continued to pour it on.
On the Rangers’ next drive he scored a 16-yard touchdown, and followed that a possession later with a 14-yard TD.
Then, with 23 seconds left in the first half, he took a punt, juked nearly the entire Malden Catholic defense and broke free for a 70-yard touchdown.
“I didn’t think I could get to the ball on the punt,” said Brutus, who added a 6-yard TD in the third. “But I got my hands on it, saw some space and just went for it. It was awesome.”
The monster debut for Brutus — who wears No. 7 for his idol, recently-graduated Methuen star Peter Kwakye — wasn’t a shocker to his teammates.
“We knew that Ricky was special,” said Bryant, who added 64 yards and a touchdown rushing. “I’ve been playing with him for a few years, and it’s really impressive what kind of player and athlete he is. He had some great games on JV last year.”
When Brutus wasn’t running wild, the defense was frustrating the Malden Catholic offense. 
The Lancers managed just 47 yards of offense in the first half and 147 for the game. Both of their touchdowns came long after the Ranger starters had left the game.
Jamie Blaisdell recorded a pair of sacks for Methuen, delivering a monster hit on Malden QB Will Ragucci. Anthony Romano added six tackles and Noah Antoon chipped in with a sack.
The Rangers now hope to keep the momentum going heading into their Merrimack Valley Conference opener on Friday, when they host Tewksbury.
“The win feels great,” said Brutus. “We wanted to prove it to ourselves out there. We wanted to show that Methuen football isn’t dead.”

Game Statistics:

First Quarter

Me — Safety, Malden punt snap goes out of end zone, 6:29

Me — Ricky Brutus 22 run (kick failed), 4:32 

Second Quarter

Ma — Gerald Copson 31 field goal, 9:31

Me — Brutus 16 run (pass failed), 6:30

Me — Brutus 14 run (Justin Sheehan kick), 3:37

Me — Brutus 70 punt return (Sheehan kick), 0:23 

Third Quarter

Me — Connor Bryant 9 run (kick failed), 8:20

Ma — Will Ragucci 5 run (Copson), 3:35

Me — Brutus 6 run (Sheehan kick), 1:00 

Fourth Quarter

Ma — Zeke Bragg 4 4 run (kick failed), 5:12



RUSHING: Methuen (32-261) — Ricky Brutus 10-102, Connor Bryant 8-64, Zach Bergeron 4-50, Michael Palmer 3-42, Noah Morris 1-5, Onyera Chibuogwu 4-0, Kareem Coleman 2-(-2); Malden Catholic (31-119) — Zeke Bragg 3-62, Will Ragucci 14-30, Jordan Kelley 8-29, Sean Kelley 4-13, Nick Cornay 2-(-15) 

PASSING: Methuen — Bryant 3-6-0, 50; Malden Catholic — Ragucci 6-14-0, 28

RECEIVING: Methuen — Caleb Adames 1-35, Isaac Frederique 1-15, Brutus 1-0; Malden Catholic: Nick Scarpello 2-28, Bragg 1-6, Sean Kelley 1-3, Nick Cornay 2-(-9)

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