EAST PROVIDENCE — James Murphy scored on the very first play from scrimmage for the visiting Barrington High School football team Friday night, Oct. 4, in its Division I outing against host East Providence, sending the Eagles off and running to a convincing 42-21 victory over the Townies at Pierce Memorial Stadium.
Murphy broke off right tackle then scampered untouched down the sideline en route to the 65-yard touchdown, giving unbeaten Barrington (3-0 in D-I, 4-0 overall) a lead it would only build upon the rest of the first quarter and into the break.
A little less than five minutes later fullback John Martin notched the first of his three touchdown runs on the evening, taking a dive play up the middle 25 yards to the end zone. Earlier in the drive, he ran 23 yards after taking a screen pass from Eagles’ quarterback Matt Rota in the right flat.
Martin next scored on a bull rush up the gut for a seven-yard score on the first play of the second quarter to help make the score 21-0 Eagles. Nick Jensen (20 yards), Sam Vetromile (29) and Murphy (19) helped set up Martin’s touchdown with long runs.
Martin later capped the Eagles’ scoring when he added a three-yard burst mid-way through the third quarter, ripping off runs of 14 and 17 yards as well earlier in the possession.
Christol Meltsakos’ 13-yard run less than three minutes into the second quarter and the fourth of Kyle Gibalerio’s seven extra point kicks upped Barrington’s edge to a near insurmountable 28-0 margin before the break. On the play before his score, Meltsakos raced 18 yards to the Townie 13.
The Eagles dominated the opening 24 minutes, out-gaining the Townies 262-71 on offense. East Providence had no answer, really, for Barrington on either side of the ball all night, but especially in the first half.
The Townies finally got on the board with 4:46 left before intermission, fullback Austin Baptista using a second-effort lunge to cross the goal line. Baptista would eventually tack on the third E.P. touchdown, scoring from 12 yards away in the fourth quarter.
Murphy added Barrington’s fifth touchdown, running unscathed from 12 yards out early in the third quarter. Rota opened the brief four-play drive with an 11-yard keeper. Murphy then went for 28 and Rota completed a flare pass to Martin for six yards prior to the touchdown.
The score came after a fumble ended the Townies’s opening possession of the period as E.P. seemed to be picking up some momentum while driving into Eagles’ territory. Robert Colantonio recovered for the visitors, Murphy capping a short four-play possession with his second TD of the night.
John Costa, subbing for injured starter Trystan Casey at quarterback, sneaked in the Townies’ second score from a yard out moments after Jaevin Milhouse advanced an E.P. fumble 74 yards to the Barrington one. Corey Resendes converted each of his three point after kicks for the Townies.
The Eagles had punched the ball free from Baptista on a rush up the middle. The ball flew backwards a few yards, laying innocently on the turf for a moment or two before Milhouse scooped it up and ran unabated down the sideline until several Barrington defenders began pursuit. It sat so long, in fact, the play resembled a “fumble-roosky,” a planned attempt at trickery where the ball is intentionally left on the ground to try to deceive the opposition.
Casey, the Townies’ most explosive offensive weapon, appeared to suffer a right wrist injury late in the second quarter after taking a big hit from a couple of Barrington defenders on the last of his three QB keepers that helped facilitate Baptista’s first score. He did return to take his spot on the E.P. defense at safety the rest of the game.
The loss kept the Townies winless both overall (0-4) and in Division I (0-2). East Providence returns to action Friday night, Oct. 11, at Cranston Stadium against Cranston East at 7 o’clock. The Thunderbolts, who had a bye this week, enter the game at 1-1 in the league.
Barrington steps away from D-I action to face New Bedford Oct. 11 in a non-league contest. The Whalers, of the Big Three Conference in southeastern Massachusetts, enter the game 1-3 overall.