Nashua South football can’t quite catch Concord

Photo by ANDREW SYLVIA Nashua South's Jaylan Pacheco finds an opening during the Panthers' opener against Concord on Friday night.

CONCORD – Only a failed two-point conversion with 14.3 seconds left separated the Panthers of Nashua South and the Concord Crimson Tide on Friday night, with Concord emerging with a 28-26 victory.

South got on the board first thanks to Jaylan Pacheco’s 1-yard run eight minutes into the first quarter. Concord successfully blocked the extra point, Pacheco brought that lost point back onto the board in the second quarter, adding a two-point conversion after another goal line dash with 5:54 left before the half.

Concord cut the lead by seven before the end of the quarter, with senior Zachary Miles connecting with Ronan McGonigle from 10 yards out on the following drive, but the Panthers seemed poised to negate that score thanks to Brendon Frost’s 88-yard kickoff return at the beginning of the second half.

A penalty in the backfield negated that score, and the Crimson Tide held the Panthers’ offense at bay, forcing a red zone fumble and trading punts over the next four drives before Issac Gladey took in a seven-yard run 10:17 into the quarter, evening the score at 14-14.

Concord capitalized on another fumble on the next Panthers’ drive, leaving the ball at midfield, where Miles added a touchdown throw to Gladey on the Tides’ first play following the fumble.

Although Brendon Frost provided another short yardage touchdown early in the fourth, he could not provide South with a subsequent two-point conversion, leaving the game at 21-20 in favor of the hosts.

Gladey added his third touchdown of the night with just 1:16 left to play, finishing a seven play, 79-yard drive that seemed to seal Concord’s victory until Frost returned the favor with just moments left in the contest.

The Panthers return to Stellos Stadium next Friday for a showdown with Bishop Guertin while Concord travels to Bedford next Friday for a pivotal North Division battle. Both games begin at 7 p.m.