MILLBURN, NJ - Nasir Love's 2-yard touchdown run with 5:39 left in the fourth quarter broke a tie and gave Madison a 13-7 victory over Millburn in the 85th and final edition of the Thanksgiving series between the teams before about 2,000 spectators on Thursday.
The two schools have mutually agreed to end their Thanksgiving series after this year. With the victory, Madison finishes with a 53-27-5 advantage in the rivalry.
Millburn (2-8) rallied to tie the game late in the first half, but was done in by several turnovers in Madison territory, including a goal-line fumble midway through the second quarter that the Dodgers recovered in their end zone for a touchback.
Millburn quarterback Peter Serruto surpassed 3,000 passing yards for his career in the game. He had completions of 39 yards to tight end Sam Gladson and three long hookups with Ben Pampush totaling 90 yards in the first half.
After Madison (5-5) took a 7-0 lead with 4:10 left in the first quarter on Ryan Schmitz' 23-yard TD run, Serruto moved Millburn into Madison territory with a 33-yard pass to Pampush to the 2-yard line before the Millers turned the ball over with 5:44 left in the half.
But Millburn got another opportunity before halftime and cashed in on this one. Ryan Koplitz picked off a short pass by Madison near the line of scrimmage and returned it 12 yards to the Dodgers' 29. Serruto found Pampush down the left sideline for a 28-yard pickup to the 1 on the next play, and then Tanner Partoll scored on the next play on a counter run with 44 seconds left. Constantine Vasilopoulos's extra point tied the game, 7-7.
After a scoreless third quarter, Millburn committed two costly fumbles close to the red zone in the fourth quarter, losing the ball at the Madison 21 early in the quarter and then, after Love's go-ahead TD, fumbling it back to the Dodgers at the Madison 26 with 3:23 left.