Rams win New England Bowl thanks to goal-line stand by defense

oad to take on the Salve Regina Seahawks in the 2016 New England Bowl.

After receiving the opening kickoff, the Rams came out of the gates hot. On the first play from scrimmage, Quron Wright took a handoff and carried it 79 yards for a touchdown. After a successful extra point, Framingham went up 7-0.

After forcing a stop on the Seahawks’ first possession, the Rams got the ball back on offense. Napoleon Miller ran it on the first play of the drive for a gain of six yards. On the third play of the drive, Adam Wojenski connected with Michael Calicchio for a 75-yard touchdown through the air. Shawn St. Marie converted the extra point to make it 14-0.

On its next drive, Salve Regina marched down the field for a touchdown of its own. Sam Pascale and James Dawson both picked up big chunks of yards for the Seahawks before Pascale finished off the drive with a 26-yard run for a touchdown. After the extra point, the Seahawks cut the deficit to 14-7.

Framingham came out and scored for a third time on its third drive of the game. Wright and Miller combined for six rushes and 41 yards to put the Rams into field-goal range. On fourth down, St. Marie connected on a 38-yard field goal to put the Rams up 17-7.

After back-to-back punts from the Seahawks, the Rams added to the lead. This time it was Trevon Offley, who ran it in from six yards out to give Framingham a 23-7 lead after a missed extra point. The drive consisted of five runs and four passes for 62 yards.

The Seahawks moved the ball down the field on their next possession but the drive ended with an interception with just three seconds left in the half. Defensive back Rashawn Rivers made the interception for the Rams, picking the ball off at the Framingham three-yard line and sending the game to halftime at 23-7.

The Seahawks received the second half kickoff, and came out with seven straight run plays. Pascale and Dawson combined for six rushes and 40 yards before Brandan Basil finished off the drive with a four-yard touchdown to cut into the Rams lead. After a failed two point conversion, the Rams held a 23-13 lead.

Later in the third quarter, the Rams added to the lead. Offley led Framingham down the field with five carries for 26 yards. Wojenski then connected with Miller for a 21-yard score. After a successful extra point the Rams lead grew to 30-13

On the very next drive, the Seahawks answered back with a touchdown of their own. After big chunks on the ground from Pascale and Dawson, Basil completed a 44-yard touchdown pass to Chris Caron to narrow the deficit to 30-20.

Framingham came right back with a touchdown of its own on the next possession. The Rams went 71 yards in 13 plays to grow the lead to 37-20. Wojenski ran twice on the drive for 38 yards and a touchdown.

The Seahawks got the ball and marched down the field in 58 seconds for a touchdown of their own. The four play, 52-yard drive was capped off by a 25-yard touchdown from Dawson to make it 37-27.

On the next drive, Framingham looked to put the game out of reach. On the second play of the drive, John Salute got through the offensive line for a strip sack. He recovered the fumble and brought it into the end zone for a touchdown. After the extra point, the lead was just three for the Rams.

After forcing a Framingham punt with five minutes remaining, the Seahawks got possession on their own 43-yard line. Pascale and Dawson again took turns gaining big chunks of yards until reaching the seven-yard line for a first-and-goal. Pascale gained two yards on first down. On second, Pascale rushed for three more yards. It was Pascale again on third, rushing for a yard to set up a fourth-and-goal from the one-yard line.

The Seahawks elected to go for it on fourth down and go for the win. They handed the ball off to Pascale one more time. The Framingham defense held strong and made the tackle before Pascale crossed the goal line to secure the victory.

Framingham ran out the clock and won the 2016 New England Bowl by a score of 37-34.

In the win, Wojenski threw for 224 yards and had three total touchdowns. Wright led the Rams in rushing with 12 attempts for 121 yards. Offley had 13 attempts for 49 yards.

Calicchio caught three passes for 123 yards and a touchdown while Miller reeled in six catches for 61 yards and a touchdown.

Aaron Owens, Svenn Jacobson and Thomas Burns all had eight tackles apiece to lead the Rams on defense.

Framingham closes out its season with a win to improve to 8-3 for the year.