By Amara Grautski, Globe Correspondent | November 27, 2009
Thanksgiving was a great day for stripes.
As the final seconds ticked off the clock, a sea of Tigers and Bengals fans flooded the field at English High School, even though the followers of the Boston South teams are usually at odds.
O’Bryant’s 6-2 win sent Latin Academy packing and catapulted Brighton (4-6, 4-1) into the playoffs.
O’Bryant (8-2) had nothing to gain – it couldn’t earn a playoff berth even with a victory – but coach Kevin Gadson seemed determined to put another mark in the win column and prove any naysayers wrong.
“Our record speaks for itself,’’ Gadson said. “We don’t have any control over who goes [to the playoffs]. We just want to win every game.’’
O’Bryant set the tone early, with quarterback Omari Alfred and running back Chandler Ransom teaming up to move the ball 70 yards on the ground on the first drive of the game. It culminated in a 5-yard touchdown run by Ransom to put the Tigers on top, 6-0.
“We just have to make our moves, and follow our blocks, and stick together,’’ said Ransom. “We’ve just had this relationship and just bonded well, and it carried out well throughout the whole season.’’
There were only four minutes remaining in the first quarter when the O’Bryant defense went to work – and it never relented. Latin Academy (8-3) was held to only 2 yards before halftime.
“Defense comes from the heart, and we’ve been preaching it the last two years, and they really played a good defensive season,’’ Gadson said. “Although we have a couple losses, they really played defense pretty good outside of two games. We expected it today.’’
The Dragons threatened in the third quarter, marching 47 yards on their first drive. The burst seemed promising, but quarterback Justin Miles failed to connect with Anthony DePina in the back corner of the end zone on fourth down.
The teams traded turnovers before the quarter came to a close; Latin Academy fumbled twice and Alfred threw an interception to Dylan Warfield for the second time in the game.