New Hampshire Football Report

Pinkerton/South recap

Three thing we learned from Pinkerton Academy’s 28-6 triumph over Nashua South on Friday night in Derry:

1) The Astros aren’t lacking players who can run effectively with the football.
Terrell Hicks
was Pinkerton’s most productive back against the Panthers, but not by much. Hicks ran for a game-high 92 yards and a two touchdown on nine carries. Halfback Ty Hicks added 86 yards on eight carries; quarterback Aiden Goujon had 73 yards rushing and a TD on four carries, and Gannon Fast ran for a 1-yard TD and finished the game with 62 yards on 14 carries. The Astros have other good backs too, including sophomore Avery Battle, who Pinkerton coach Brian O’Reilly said will soon remind people of former Pinkerton halfback Emmitt Smith.

“I have a diversified stable of running backs,” O’Reilly said. “You can’t focus on one kid because I don’t focus on one kid. I have a whole slew of them around me and I just throw them in and throw them in and throw them in. Sometimes in the past I’ve had a kid who’s a blocker and another kid who’s fast runner outside, but all these kids do the same thing. Multiple fullbacks, multiple halfbacks, multiple receivers.”

2) South has to get healthy in a hurry.
The Panthers were without running back/outside linebacker Jaylan Pacheco and tight end/linebacker Jarrett Bieren on Friday night because of injuries. The loss dropped South’s record to 0-2, and the Panthers will face a 2-0 Merrimack team on the road next Friday.

“They’re two of our best defenders,” South coach Scott Knight said. “Not having them hurt us a little bit, but that’s not why we lost. If you can’t stop the run and run the football winning games is difficult. We have to figure out this run game.”

Merrimack’s victories have come against Keene (27-7) and Bishop Guertin (42-29).

“Huge game,” Knight said. “Gigantic. We got out of the gate 0-2 before and we’ve been fine, but we have to get better.”

3) Pinkerton has outscored its opponents 76-6 this season, but O’Reilly said he’s unsure how good his team is. He’ll find out more when Pinkerton plays at Salem on Saturday.

“You’re asking me how good we are?” O’Reilly said after the South game. “Both teams we beat I think are 0-2. That doesn’t mean that we’re not good, but it doesn’t mean that we are good. Next week it’ll be 2-0 versus 2-0 and we’ll find out what’s what.”

Salem, the No. 2 team in the Union Leader Power Poll (Pinkerton is tied for No. 5), beat South 40-14 in its opener and manhandled Keene 57-14 on Friday night.

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