September 29, 2023
by Laurie Los Lee
FAIRHAVEN — It was a moment Justin Marques will never forget. As soon as the Fairhaven junior running back crossed over the goal line on his 37-yard scamper in the third quarter of Friday night’s game against Bourne, he was swarmed by his teammates. It was Marques’ third touchdown of the game and the 42nd of his career, breaking the school’s all-time career mark of 41 set by Nate Pickup in 1992. (Photo: Nate Pickup '93 congratulates Justin Marques '25 after the game.)
“It feels surreal to be able to hold the record like that,” Marques said after Fairhaven’s 46-10 win. “With all the hugs, I was holding in the happy tears. It was just amazing to get that accomplishment.”
Fairhaven sophomore center Zach Moura added, “It was something special. Knowing that he broke something that hasn’t been broken in a really long time it’s really great and it’s something once in a lifetime. You don’t get to relive that or see that again. Being able to share that moment with him is really awesome.” Moura said it’s a pleasure blocking for a player like Marques.
“If you open up a gap, he’s going to find a way through and he’s going to get to the end zone,” Moura said. “He’s a really great runner and he’s a really great teammate. He really gets the team energized. Every day I’m grateful to block for him.
“He makes the whole team feel like it’s their award. He cares about the team and the whole program.”
Marques credited his line, saying, “That accomplishment is nothing without them. They’re the ones in the trenches, putting in the work for me.”
Following the game, Marques was presented with the game ball by head coach Derek Almeida and Pickup, whose son, Nathan Jr., is on the team.
“It was nice,” Pickup said. “He’s a very good player. He runs hard. Eventually most records get broken. You knew at some point it was going to happen.
“They’re a good team. It’s nice that I can watch them play. My son is here and I probably wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for that. It’s kind of bittersweet.”
Almeida said he knew Marques had the makings of something special when he first saw him freshman year.
“The first couple of days of practice you could tell he was different,” Almeida recalled. “He was already put together. He was strong, quick, agile and he understood the game. He already knew how to play on both sides of the ball.”
Marques scored five touchdowns in his freshman year, helping Fairhaven win the South Coast Conference Gold Division title and reach the Div. 5 state playoffs.
“We went on a nice run his freshman year and he was a big piece of that team that did some special things that year,” Almeida said, noting that Fairhaven lost to North Reading in the first round of the tournament that year. “He wants opportunities like that again.”
Marques followed that up with a breakout performance his sophomore year, scoring a Fairhaven High single-season record 25 touchdowns to help the Blue Devils defend their conference crown.
Through four games of 2023, Marques had scored a SouthCoast-leading 12 touchdowns.
“It’s a special moment for him and his family,” Almeida said. “It’s a team accomplishment together with kids that graduated before and the kids that we have now. We’ve got this thing going in a really good direction and we’ve generated a positive culture for Fairhaven High football. Because of that he had the opportunity to do what he did.
“He’s a special player. He’s done some amazing things in the last three years.”
Fairhaven got off to a quick start with Marques scoring on his team’s first play from scrimmage with a 19-yard touchdown run following a turnover by Bourne. Four minutes later, senior Colby Correia made it 12-0 when he scored on a 26-yard run.
Fairhaven scored three more times in the second quarter on runs — by Correia (51 yards), senior Chase Feno (23 yards) and Marques (one yard) — to enter halftime ahead 32-3.
Marques’ school-record run up the middle came on Fairhaven’s second possession of the third quarter and put the Blue Devils ahead 46-3.
With the win, Fairhaven improves 4-0. The Blue Devils visit Case on Friday. … With the loss, Bourne drops to 2-2.