by Kristen Parker
This 62nd meeting of the Martha’s Vineyard Vinyarders and the Nantucket Whalers had an incredible amount of history and pride. Nantucket had not won the coveted “Island Cup” in 10 years and stood a chance this year.
On the opening drive, Nantucket ran the ball 70 yards to the 20-yard line and looked poised to score. MV intercepted, however, on the 10 yard line and worked down field with 5:24 remaining in the first quarter.
MV dominated the first half at Vito Capizzo Stadium. They weren’t doing fancy plays, just keeping it on the ground and dominating field position. They took the scoreboard first with a long drive that led to a touchdown and went for the 2-point conversion. With 4:12 remaining in the 1st half, Vineyarders led the Whalers 8-0.
As Nantucket got some momentum, MV struck back. Fourth quarter began with Nantucket in control but MV stopped them and forced a fumble in the end zone, adding 2 points to the score. MV led 10-0 with 6:37 remaining in the game.
Despite many faulty clock operational errors (adding time to the clock, etc.) Nantucket brought some dominance to this quarter. Codie Perry played for both the defense and offense, helping Nantucket score a running touchdown and extra point. With 3:32 left in the game, MV still led 10-7.
Tensions couldn’t have been higher. MV had the ball and was working on driving it to the end zone, but Nantucket recovered a fumble and took the ball on their own 40-yard line. They needed a field goal to tie the game and a touchdown to win it with 1:53 remaining in the game.
With 1 minute remaining, Nantucket was almost to the end zone when MV intercepted, running the clock out and winning (and keeping) the coveted Island Cup. #24 Tyler Arujo was MVP of the game for Martha’s Vineyard, and the final score was 10-7.