FOXBOROUGH — Isaac Yiadom just couldn’t stand still.
It’s usually a situation his opponents know all too well, with the high-scoring senior playing receiver and defensive back for the Doherty Highlanders.
But in the moments before Saturday’s Division 4 Super Bowl against Dennis-Yarmouth, as most of his team stood motionless in the south end zone soaking in the surroundings, Yiadom was racing the width of the field behind them.
“I was real revved up,” said Yiadom. “I was waiting too long in the hallway. I needed to get out on the field and play football.”
From the opening kickoff, the Boston College-bound Yiadom was a relentless force on both sides of the ball. The 6-foot-1-inch Yiadom rushed for 138 yards and a touchdown, and forced a crucial incompletion late in the contest as the Highlanders held on for a 28-26 victory at Gillette Stadium.
“We were balanced and we stayed balanced,” said Doherty coach Sean Mulcahy. “The running yards were tough to come by today against these guys. We were able to run the ball enough to keep them off balance. I think that helped get our receivers open.”
Trailing, 28-14, with less than five minutes to play, junior L.K. Metz collected a rolling kickoff near the right sideline for Dennis-Yarmouth (10-3) and eluded a host of Highlanders before being marked down at the Doherty 9-yard line.
Senior quarterback Spencer Tyler (133 yards passing) connected with sophomore Andrew Jamiel for 9-yard touchdown on the following play, but the point-after kick was blocked by Doherty’s Jahkari Carpenter to keep the score at 28-20 with 4:37 remaining.
Then Doherty (12-1) recovered the onside kick near midfield and attempted to run out the clock. Facing a third and 7 at midfield, Yiadom hauled in a 12-yard reception over the top of a linebacker to keep the drive alive. After a bad snap set up a fourth and 16 from the D-Y 44-yard line, Doherty punted to the D-Y 21 with two minutes remaining.
Dennis-Yarmouth attempted a running back option on its first play, as Mike Dunn made a bid for Jake Pawlina on the right sideline, but the pass was jarred loose from Pawlina’s grasp by a heavy hit from Yiadom.
The Dolphins returned to the air on fourth and 10 from the 21 and coverted. Then Tyler finished off the drive with a 7-yard TD.
Down, 28-26, with 56 seconds left, the Dolphins went for the 2-point conversion, but Tyler’s pass fell short of his receiver in the end zone.
Dennis-Yarmouth opened the scoring as Tyler kept the ball and tucked it inside the left pylon for an 11-yard TD late in the first quarter.
The Highlanders scored with 1:38 remaining in the first half. Carpenter disected the Dolphins defense for 21 of his 87 rushing yards before being corralled at the D-Y 9-yard line.
Two plays later, senior quarterback Luke Brennan (259 yards passing, two touchdowns) rushed in from 8 yards. A failed 2-point conversion kept D-Y in the lead, 7-6.
Dennis-Yarmouth misplayed the ensuing kickoff but collected a loose ball at the 16-yard line. With D-Y buried in its end of the field, Mulcahy used two timeouts to get the ball back with one minute remaining in the half.
On fourth and 10 from the D-Y 41, Brennan unloaded a deep pass to wide receiver Alfred Adarkwah, who hauled in the touchdown reception as time expired.
Doherty scored on its first possession of the second half for a 21-7 lead.
Lined up in single-coverage with a linebacker, Yiadom burned the Dolphins secondary on his way to a 64-yard TD catch from Brennan.
After a 2-yard rush by Cory Desimone cut the Doherty lead to 7, Carpenter punched it in from the 1-yard line for a 28-14 Highlander advantage.