Both Attleboro and King Philip were coming off tough losses from the previous week when they met Friday night at Tozier-Cassidy Field on the AHS campus. But only King Philip was able to turn the negative feeling into a positive as it dominated on both sides of the field in a 35-7 win.
The Kelley-Rex Division victory improves King Philip's record to 7-1 (2-1 in division). Attleboro dropped to 4-4 (0-3). The loss was the fourth straight for a Bombardier team that had begun the season with four wins.
"I give credit to KP," Attleboro head coach Kevin Deschenes said. "They were more physical than we were. They were more physical on the line of scrimmage on both sides of the ball."
King Philip scored on the opening possession when junior quarterback J.J. Dillon connected with senior wide receiver Joe Cochrane for a 61-yard touchdown, and the team never looked back. The Warriors also were a force on defense, preventing Attleboro from getting a first down until the second quarter and sacking junior quarterback Tim Walsh five times.
"They gave hard-nosed football upfront and we need to learn how to match that intensity," Deschenes said. "Not that our kids didn't fight because they did, they fought all the way through. But we have to get stronger, we have to get better and more physical as we move on, plus the fact we got to be able to move the ball."
Despite King Philip's strong performance, the Warriors only led 14-0 (second touchdown also scored by Cochrane) as the first half neared the end. It appeared Attleboro could cut that lead in half before heading to the locker room, but the momentum ended with an interception near the King Philip red zone with about 30 seconds remaining in the half.
Attleboro, which was playing without star running back Malique Clark who sat out for an unspecified reason not related to injury, showed some sign of life on the first possession of the second half. The Bombardiers marched into Warrior territory with some big plays, including a long pass to junior tight end Luke Morrison. But Attleboro was stopped at the 37-yard line, and turned the ball over on downs.
King Philip then took the ball quickly down the other side of the field through a series of strong passing and running plays. The possession concluded with a three-yard touchdown run by junior tailback Joe Johnston.
Attleboro's home crowd finally had something to cheer about early in the fourth quarter when junior linebacker Joe Deiratani scooped up a King Philip fumble near mid-field. Two plays later, the Bombardiers were in the end zone on a 49-yard pass to Morrison.
The Bombardiers attempted an onside kick to capitalize on the momentum, but it was not successful. King Phillip scored twice more in the quarter with a 35-yard touchdown run by Johnston and a one-yard run into the end zone by sophomore Andrew D'Amico. The game ended with Attleboro advancing deep into the King Philip side of the field, playing with full effort despite the lopsided score.
Next week, Attleboro will travel to Stoughton and King Philip will host Oliver Ames.