Indians kick off football season with shutout over rival Spartans

Sep 10, 2021

Two years after leaving the gridiron in defeat, Dartmouth High is back in the win column over crosstown rival Bishop Stang after blanking the Spartans 35-0 to start the fall season on Sept. 10.

“We knew we could do this, we were just waiting to get out here,” Senior Quarterback Will Kelly said. “We wanted to put them in the dirt as soon as possible.”

The Indians opened up the offense early, with senior Ethan Marques rushing in a touchdown during Dartmouth’s first possession of the game. 

“It’s a great way to start,” Head Coach Rick White said. “That was a huge play.”

Things remained close in the first half after a series of back-and-forth possession changes, including some fumbles from Dartmouth. Despite the early missteps, the Indians defense kept going as the team ended the half up 14-0 following a rushing touchdown from Kelly.

“We let Stang hang around the first half,” White said. “Fortunately, our defense played very well tonight.”

The run game continued to dominate the second half, with two additional rushing touchdowns from Kelly and one from senior William Chau.

“We didn’t even have to pass the ball today,” Kelly said with a laugh.

For the Spartans, head coach Dennis Golden said the main issue that led to Dartmouth’s unstoppable run game was with his team’s physicality on defense.

“We’ve got to tackle better,” he said, adding that ball security is another aspect of the game he hopes to improve amongst his players. 

Golden noted that this year’s Spartan squad is relatively young, with the team primarily consisting of sophomores and juniors.

“It’s a challenge to build a team and we’ve got to build ours,” Golden said.

Even more impressive than the run game, Kelly said, was the atmosphere at Memorial Stadium.

Under the social distancing rules set by the school district, spectators were very limited last year.

I’ve been used to playing in front of around 40 to 50 people,” Kelly noted.

With restrictions eased, things were especially lively as the teams made their return to fall football, with stands full of students and families loudly cheering on both teams at the stadium.

“It’s the best feeling you could have in the world,” Kelly said.

Bishop Stang will travel to New Bedford to play against Old Rochester Regional High School.

Dartmouth High will face-off against Voc-Tech in New Bedford.