Eagles soar to wild 52-44 victory over Boston Latin

Since the series first began all the way back in 1887, the Thanksgiving Day battle between Boston Latin and Boston English/New Mission has featured plenty of great highlights. However, records would indicate that it has been lopsided in favor of the Wolfpack, at least in recent decades.

But if the events of the previous two meetings are any indication of what’s to come, fans of the Eagles should rightfully be excited. Senior Tysean Jackson finished with a pair of touchdowns Thursday, one of which came off an 89-yard interception return, as Boston English/New Mission made history by winning its second straight Thanksgiving game by topping Boston Latin in a 52-44 shootout at Harvard Stadium.

Boston English/New Mission’s Cory Collins is hit by Boston Latin’s during a Thanksgiving Day shootout Thursday. (Stuart Cahill/Boston Herald)

“We had only won four times in these last sixty years,” said Eagles coach Ryan Conway. “Or since the 70s. So it’s an honor to get to represent English, my alma mater. It’s great that these kids put in all the work to get us to (go) back-to-back.”

It was the first instance in which the Eagles had won consecutive Thanksgiving tilts since the program last did so back in 1963. In very similar fashion to their previous matchup in 2021 (a 66-42 win for Boston English/New Mission), theprograms traded scores early on, before the Eagles began to gain some separation. Jackson would help Boston English/New Mission seize its first lead of the day at 16-14, as he scampered for a 7-yard touchdown with 11:10 to play in the second quarter.

Looking for a late strike to end the half, Boston Latin senior Douglas George scrambled around the backfield in search of an option. He proceeded to fire a shot downfield, where Jackson was waiting. The senior jumped the route for an interception, then began sprinting in the other direction. Seconds later, he was off to the races for a pick-six. Suddenly, the Eagles were in complete control, up 38-14. When all was said and done, Boston English/New Mission racked up 30 points in the second quarter alone.

The Wolfpack made a furious charge in the fourth quarter, even cutting it as close as 52-44 with 25 seconds remaining in regulation off a 2-yard touchdown rush by George. However, the ensuing onside kick was recovered by the Eagles to cap things.

It was a complete team effort for Boston English/New Mission, primarily in the running game. Cory Collins paced the Eagles with 83 yards rushing and a score.

George carried Boston Latin all day, finishing with 423 yards offensively (207 passing, 216 rushing), with five total touchdowns.

The latter stages of the season provided some unique challenges for Conroy and his coaching staff, as the program sustained a crucial blow in numbers when the regular season concluded. He is hopeful that the MIAA will look at possibly adjusting its football system moving forward.

“Something has got to be done about this playoff system,” Conway said. “Especially for a team like mine. The Thanksgiving Day rivalries in the Northeast, particularly in New England and in Massachusetts, is unique. It’s a unique thing across the country. We are the only sport in the MIAA that starts their system before the conclusion of the season, and it’s not right. It’s not fair to our kids. If we had our full team, I think we’d have had a repeat of last year.”