Amidst pouring rain at Saunders Stadium, the New Mission and South Boston football teams slipped and scurried along in their kickoff to the 2013 season Friday.
For the coaches, this was New Mission coach Michael Foreman's second season, and coach of South Boston, Ray Butler's, first.
New Mission shut out South Boston, 54-0, for the first football win in school history. New Mission’s first season fielding a football team was last year, when it lost all nine games.
But here, in a new season, this New Mission squad definitely is living in the moment.
“I’m literally ecstatic right now,” coach Michael Foreman said. “Let me tell you, today I feel like a proud father. These boys played so well, and to win our first game in school history, it’s awesome.”
New Mission hit the ground running, as junior running back and team captain Steven Thomas rushed for a 63-yard touchdown on the first play from scrimmage. After a successful 2-point conversion by fellow running back Daniel Nkwah, New Mission had an 8-0 lead.
From there, New Mission dominated on both sides of the ball.
Thomas rushed for three more touchdowns and 192 yards, quarterback Chika Nzerem threw two touchdowns passes for 98 yards, and the New Mission defense forced two fumbles and even recovered one in the end zone for a touchdown.
“Everyone did their job today,” Thomas said. “The lineman held their blocks, even the wide receivers did great keeping the cornerbacks off me. Those touchdowns wouldn’t have happened without my teammates.”
Receiver Damon Jean caught both touchdown passes from Nzerem, a 51-yard strike with 6:31 in the first quarter and a 12-yard pass with just under two minutes left in the second quarter.
After the game, Foreman gathered his pumped-up players at the 50-yard line to congratulate them but also remind them it was only their first game.
Still, Thomas let everyone know how thrilled he was.
“This is my first varsity win as a player, and for that matter a captain,” he said. "It feels awesome. I just can’t wait to get back on the field next week.”
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- Justin A. Rice -- A metro Detroit native, Rice is a Michigan State University (Go Spartans!) and Northeastern University graduate. Rice lives in the South End with his dog and wife, who unfortunately attended the University of Michigan ... his wife, that is. He curates the BPS Sports Blog and is always looking to write about city athletes with great stories. Have an idea? He can be reached at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @GlobeJustinRice or @BPSspts.
- Ryan Butler -- A Rhode Island native and avid Boston sports fan, Butler played basketball, baseball and football throughout his time in Barrington Public Schools. Now currently in his middler year at Northeastern University, he joins Boston.com as a correspondent for the site's BPS coverage. Have a story idea? Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on his Twitter @butler_globe.