MARLBOROUGH – Hello, Miguel Borges!
After an injury to the starting quarterback on Sept. 14, Borges – who previously played running back – stepped into the role. In only his third game under center, Borges led the Marlborough Panthers to a commanding 30-0 victory against the Fitchburg Red Raiders on Friday night at Kelleher Field.
The Panthers scored four touchdowns – Borges was responsible for every single one.
Borges first found the end zone with 8:52 remaining in the first quarter, giving Marlborough an early 7-0 lead. After forcing Fitchburg to punt, the Panthers drove down the field again. Fernando Rodrigues – one of Marlborough’s senior captains – set the drive in motion with several big runs, and with 6:34 left in the second quarter, Borges scored another touchdown, doubling Marlborough’s lead to 14-0.
Fitchburg had an opportunity to drive down the field just before halftime. However, just as the Red Raiders seemed poised to score, Dominic Miele made an acrobatic interception near the pylon at the front of the end zone. Fitchburg was – at times – able to move the ball down the field, but the Panthers always had an answer; Miele would get another interception late in the third quarter.
“Defensively, we stopped them when we had to. They moved the ball a little bit on us, but when we had to we came up with big plays – like [Dominic] Miele’s interception,” Marlborough Head Coach Sean Mahoney told the Community Advocate after the game.
Borges scored his third touchdown with 5:09 remaining in the third quarter. Borges scored the fourth touchdown in the waning minutes of the game, scampering past the Fitchburg defense for a 50-plus yard score. The Panthers called two two-point conversions to bring their lead to an even 30 points.
“Offensively, we’re looking pretty good,” Mahoney said. “A couple penalties hurt us, but we moved the ball fairly well today… Borges is very athletic – he’s adapted to playing quarterback. He’s just done a great job, and he’s definitely a threat.”
Marlborough moves to 4-1 with the win. Mahoney said that while he felt “pretty good” about the team, there’s still much work to be done as the season progresses.
“We’ve won four, we’ve played poorly in one,” said Mahoney. “We hope that all season we have one subpar game… We’re not where we want to be, but we’re getting better.”