Merrimack football nails down playoff spot

MERRIMACK – The Tomahawks are playoff bound.

Merrimack punched its ticket to the NHIAA Division I Football Tournament thanks to a 49-28 victory over Winnacunnet on


Tomahawk sophomore quarterback Kyle Crampton picked apart the Winnacunnet defense through the air, finishing the night 22 of his 33 passing attempts with a total of 331 passing yards.

Crampton was also intercepted twice, Merrimack immediately got the ball back on his second pick, with senior offensive lineman Noah Clark forcing the intercepted ball loose, giving the ball back to the hosts.

Two plays after that recovery, Crampton found senior Jared Dyer for one of his four touchdown receptions on the night, giving Merrimack a 28-14 edge at the half.

Dyer also added a rushing touchdown en route to 38 yards on the ground and 136 yards through the air.

“I’m just really happy that we (seniors) get another week together,” said Dyer. “We didn’t come out too well, but then we got a little fire going and we got that score right before the half and scored quickly. We did well together tonight.”

Crampton also had two more touchdown throws to senior wideout Devin Wood.

Winnacunnet’s first half scores came on goal line runs from senior Chris McClelland and sophomore Kyle Tilley, with McClelland adding another rushing score in the second half.

A recovered onside kick turned into the Warriors’ final score, a 30-yard run to the end zone by junior Benjamin Chase.

McClelland led the Warriors with 78 yards. Merrimack senior Zach Twardosky led the Tomahawks with 85 yards on 13 carries.