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Milford, Andrews ice North

posted Oct 6, 2012, 3:51 AM by Milford Spartans   [ updated Oct 6, 2012, 3:56 AM ]
Turnovers are the great equalizer.

The Nashua High School North football team found that out Friday night against Milford, as the Titans turned the ball over five times in the second half and fell to the Spartans 24-21 in a crossover game at Stellos Stadium.

Milford (5-1 overall) forced six North turnovers in all, scoring 17 points off miscues. And when the Spartans weren’t coming up with big plays on defense, they were pounding the Titans with running back Connor Borne.

Borne carried 34 times for 171 yards and two touchdowns, and also caught three passes for 88 yards, including a 49-yard catch-and-run from quarterback Harrison Urda that set up kicker Morgan Andrews for a 30-yard field goal that proved to be the difference for Milford.

“The great thing about this game is the shape of the ball,” Milford coach Keith Jones said. “You never know what’s going to happen. We got lucky breaks and turned them into good things. It was a group effort.”

North (2-4 overall) got 81 yards rushing from Demitri Jackson while Brandon Martin had a 43-yard touchdown run and threw for 190 yards and two more touchdowns.

But Martin also lost two fumbles and threw two interceptions on North’s final two drives, as it was trying to rally.

“I’m utterly disappointed,” North coach Jason Robie said. “If you have turnovers and penalties, it doesn’t matter who you are playing. You’re not going to beat anybody like that. Five turnovers in the second half is ridiculous.”

The Titans took what appeared to be a commanding 21-7 lead when Martin connected with Kyle Regan on a 78-yard touchdown pass with 6:11 left in the third quarter.

But Milford answered, going on an 11-play, 80-yard drive that featured a lot of power running. Borne led the way on the drive, picking up 38 yards on the ground, including an 11-yard touchdown run that made it 21-14 with 52 seconds left in the third.

The Spartans tried an onside kick, but the ball didn’t travel the required 10 yards and North took over at the Milford 42-yard line. But two players later, Martin was hit hard and lost the football. Milford’s Brett Stagnone recovered and returned the ball to the North 6-yard line.

Mitchell Banuskevich scored on the next play and Andrews’ extra point tied the game 21-21.