By David Willis
---- — For longer than the current roster of the Andover High football team has been alive, Chelmsford has been a serious thorn in the Golden Warriors’ collective gridiron side.
A year after dealing the Lions a rare loss, 2013 continued that unfortunate trend, as Andover fell to Chelmsford last Friday, 43-22.
This marked the 13th time in the last 15 years the Golden Warriors have fallen to the Lions. Since the Andover Townsman began keeping complete records in 1984, Andover is now 6-23-1 against Chelmsford.
“Right now, we are just very inconsistent,” Andover coach E.J. Perry said. “We had too many turnovers and too many penalties, and right now we just need to show that we can play a full game.”
The game stared in ominous fashion, as the stadium lights blacked out at Eugene V. Lovely Field in Andover, causing a nearly 40-minute delay.
Once kickoff finally occurred, the Lions jumped ahead early, scoring on three of their four first-half drives, grabbing a 22-0 advantage with two minutes to go before halftime.
The Golden Warriors then managed their best drive of the day. Brandon Marti started with a 52-yard kickoff return, E.J. Perry IV hooked up with Will Eikenberry on a 14-yard pass on fourth down and then Eikenberry ran in from 2 yards out for a touchdown.
“That drive right before halftime was pretty impressive,” Perry said. “And Marti has played well on offense and defense. But we couldn’t build on that success.”
Chelmsford opened the second half with touchdowns on its first three possessions to put the game out of reach.
Eikenberry continued to be a bright spot for the Warriors, catching five passes for 117 yards and a score and making 14 tackles. Marti also picked off a pass for a 27-yard touchdown and Oliver Eberth rushed for the other score.