QUINCY — In an offseason contest where Quincy needed a big day from its biggest players, quarterback Andrew Novak responded with a career day.
After the senior Presidents team, the Quincy North team slowed down in a penalty filled 40-35 contest. Win in the 90th Thanksgiving Day meeting between rivals Quincy City went 49-36-5.
The rookie Novak was nothing short of legendary as he threw for 298 yards and five touchdowns and added a career score as the Chiefs improved to 6-4. Raiders quarterback Charlie Baker threw for a game score and ran for another as North Quincy closed to 3-7.
Novak combined with Ruben Charles on a 69-yard scoring drive and drove 98 yards to go up 15-0 on Novak’s two-yard run in the opening quarter.
“It looked like it was going to come down to the last possession of the game,” Quincy head coach Kevin Carey said. “We came out strong, I got out first, and we’re in the second play zone at the end. Quincy North did a great job and got themselves back into the game. It was a hard fought game and I’m so happy for these guys. Punishments hurt us. They hurt us all day but it turned out to be a great day.
Novak made the difference in the big fight for City’s throwing rights.
“What a game he had,” Carey said. “He had the game of his life. That’s when you need a guy to make those plays. I’m so happy for him.”
Alex Martínez went on to haul in a 36-yard touchdown run by Novak to pull Quincy up by three scores with 7:34 left in the half. The Patriots cut into the lead on a nifty 75-yard kickoff return by Nate Caldwell to make it a 21-7 contest.
The momentum picked up in the third quarter, as North Quincy scored 21 points to quell the President’s crowd. Baker capped off a 5-yard sweep on a 13-play, 61-yard drive. The Patriots got the ball back through Brody Baker and after three incompletions, Baker threw a pass to Enhea Panariti in the end zone for the seventh touchdown, tying the score at 21-21.
Quincy took it right back on its next possession, as Novak completed three passes for 63 yards, including a 27-yard bullet to Charles for a 28-21 advantage with 2:36 left in the third. Two plays later, Baker found Grant Murphy downfield for a 60-yard score to knot it up at 28.
The teams traded scores in the fourth quarter and the Chiefs took the lead for good on an 80-yard drive, highlighted by a 47-yard pass from Novak to Ham. Novak hooked up with Hamo for a 25-pointer with 3:35 left.