The first official week of the Massachusetts high school football season is in the books.
Here are some highlights (and yes, takeaways, too) from the initial week of the 2021 season.
For starters, it was great to see fans back in the stands last Friday and Saturday.
I was at one of the games — a non-conference clash between Malden Catholic and Weymouth that saw the Lancers roll past the Wildcats by a score of 35-6. The game was highlighted by some impressive defensive plays, along with a rushing attack that will once again be on display this week when the Blue and Gold host Gloucester on Friday, September 17 at 7 p.m.
The Generals defense kept the Fishermen’s offense in check, limiting Gloucester to just one touchdown, a 62-yard rushing score by Caleb DeCoste, which provided them with their first and only lead of the contest.
Friday’s clash between the Fishermen and Lancers will be one to keep an eye on — could the Lancers begin their season with back-to-back wins?
Scituate is going to be a team to watch, both this week and throughout the fall — the Sailors scored an impressive victory last Friday over Milton, thanks to Keegan Sullivan, who rushed for four touchdowns, including a 67-yard score in the third and 66-yard touchdown in the fourth to secure a 34-20 victory.
This week, the Sailors visit Duxbury on Friday for a 7 p.m. kickoff — the Dragons also scored an opening win by downing Bridgewater-Raynham by a score of 42-0.
The Norwood Mustangs are going to be a team to watch and yes, beat, in the Tri-Valley League (TVL).
Norwood commenced its 2021 campaign with a 21-14 victory over Stoughton last Friday — the win was highlighted by a trio of student-athletes, including Matt Alves, who recovered a fumble in the end zone in the third quarter.
Norwood returns to the field on Saturday, September 18 when they host Falmouth, which lost its season-opener to Plymouth North by a score of 18-14.
Jathan Greene was the player to watch last Friday afternoon in Brighton’s season-opener against O’Bryant.
Greene led the Bengals with three touchdowns — two on the ground, one through the air — while Damian Blacknall added an 82-yard rushing touchdown in the fourth.
Following Greene’s initial score against the Tigers, Quarterback Sahmir Morales connected with Isiah Joseph for a 36-yard touchdown, which provided the visitors with a 14-0 lead after one frame.
Brighton’s opponent this week — East Boston — also scored an opening day win over Boston Latin, thanks to a trio of rushing scores from Jaye Kincade, Jashua Delacruz, and Randy Bermudez.
The Jets beat the Bengals during Fall II by a score of 20-12, so it will be interesting to see if the Blue and Yellow can duplicate that performance from March on Friday.
A few additional thoughts … congrats to Brian McCray on his first win as the head coach at Belmont. The Marauders defeated Cambridge last Friday by a score of 20-7 … Wayland looked rather impressive last Friday as the Warriors rolled past Hopkinton by a score of 40-6. Shayne Sutton could not be stopped as the senior rushed for four touchdowns against the Hillers … Chelsea, which is competing in the Greater Boston League (GBL), scored an opening day against Salem, and will look to continue their early season momentum against Revere, which lost its home opener to Peabody by a score of 28-7. The two teams will square-off in Chelsea on Friday at 6 p.m.
We’ll have a few more high school football posts later this week, but for now, thanks for stopping by to read our first-week highlights — and yes, some takeaways and thoughts, too.
Welcome to Tuesday, everyone. I hope you are ALL doing well and ready for another great day – I know I am!
It may not totally feel like spring (or summer) like it did yesterday, but I am confident the weather this morning and early afternoon will put a smile on your face. And you know what will also make you smile (and feel happy) is a brand new Daily Noontime, so let’s get started.
The TD Garden will be the go-to site for some great local high school basketball this afternoon and evening – here is today’s Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association (MIAA) schedule:
MIAA D4 State Semifinals: Matignon vs. Cathedral, 2 p.m.
MIAA D4 State Semifinals: Snowden vs. Abington, 3:45 p.m.
MIAA D1 State Semifinals: Andover vs. Bridgewater-Raynham, 5:30 p.m.
MIAA D1 State Semifinals: Lynn English vs. Mansfield, 7:15 p.m.
As of this morning, it appears as if fans will be allowed to attend these four games, but if anything changes due to COVID-19, we will let you know! Fans can also stream all four contests through NFHSNetwork.com.
The Boston Bruins will return to the ice this evening when they visit the Philadelphia Flyers for a 7 p.m. face-off. Boston is looking to return to the win column after losing to the Tampa Bay Lightning this past weekend.
Following their trip to Philadelphia, Boston will head to upstate New York for a Friday evening affair with the Buffalo Sabres before returning home on Saturday, March 14th for a 7 p.m. face-off against the Toronto Maple Leafs. Let’s keep our fingers crossed for three wins this week!
The Boston Celtics return to the hardwood this evening, kicking off a three-game set in four days with a visit to the Indiana Pacers with tipoff scheduled for 7 p.m.
Boston is looking to return to the win column after being edged by the Oklahoma City Thunder on Sunday.
Following their visit to Indiana, the Celtics will take on the Milwaukee Bucks on Thursday followed by a home date Friday, March 13th against the Washington Wizards.
Speaking of games without fans, according to D3Hoops.com, Amherst College, which will be the host site of this week’s NCAA D-III Women’s Basketball Sectional semifinals and finals, will not allow supporters of the four teams in their gym after denying access last weekend for three games, including the Mammoths’ initial postseason contest against Framingham State University.
According to the Burlington Free Press, the Norwich University women’s ice hockey team will play its first NCAA Tournament game against Amherst on Wednesday, March 11th without any fans due to concerns of the coronavirus. And this may not be the first postseason college hockey game to not include fans.
The seventh week of the New England D-III Football season is in the books. There were some interesting outcomes, as well as some surprises, too.
Week seven also helped me (and others) identify which teams are still in the mix for their respective conference crowns and what squads will play spoiler over the final four weeks of the 2019 season.
Here are seven thoughts (and takeaways) from what I learned from this past weekend.
1. Endicott College looks primed for a successful stretch run. The Gulls entered their bye week with a 4-1 record – I thought prior to their first game of the season against Framingham State that they would be 3-2 entering week seven – but between the play of their offense and defense, as well as kicker Nick DiCairano, I just can’t imagine any of their four remaining opponents halting their current momentum which they have gained over the past few weeks.
Endicott almost beat Wesley College last month, which would have been a huge feather in their cap but have rebounded quite well since the setback with three-straight Commonwealth Coast Football (CCC) wins, including a hard-fought victory on the road against Salve Regina University.
iQuarterback Joe Kalosky has looked very comfortable behind an offensive line that has allowed him to go through his motions and find open receivers either over the middle or down the field. Additionally, first-year wideout Anthony Bracamonte has become a go-to target for the senior signal-caller – look for the former Thornton Academy receiver to help the Gulls continue their recent momentum this upcoming week against Husson University.
2. Middlebury College seems to be a lock for the New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC). I picked the Panthers to beat the Cardinals of Wesleyan University this past weekend, but I didn’t expect the Blue and White to produce 45 points in 60 minutes.
Quarterback Will Jernigan had his best game of the season (in my opinion) by tossing four touchdowns in the win while completing 18 of 25 passes for 359 yards.
Maxwell Rye was also instrumental in his team’s sixth win of the season, too – the senior wide receiver from Longmeadow, Massachusetts has enjoyed his best season with the Panthers, catching 26 passes for 493 yards and four touchdowns. The four touchdown receptions are the most Rye has recorded in a single-season.
On defense, Jack Pistorius continues to be a player to watch on Middlebury – he tallied a team-high 10 total tackles, including two sacks for a loss of 11 yards.
The win over the Cardinals was the Panthers’ most impressive performance of the season – yes, they looked good against Amherst College and Trinity College, but Saturday’s effort should translate into three more wins, beginning this Saturday against Bowdoin College.
3. Bridgewater State remains a team to watch in the Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference (MASCAC). The Bears are still very much alive in the MASCAC with four weeks remaining.
Their 56-20 win over UMass Dartmouth helped the Red and White keep pace for the top spot with Framingham State and Western Connecticut, two teams that enter the eighth week of the 2019 season with identical undefeated conference records. Bridgewater lost to Western Connecticut earlier this season – they had a few chances to win that game – and will visit the Rams in the second week of November in what could determine a possible conference champion.
Bridgewater State quarterback Stefano D’Emilia re-wrote the record book yesterday against the Corsairs with eight touchdowns, including three on the ground. He threw for a school-record 345 yards while becoming the second Bears signal-caller to throw for more than 5,000 yards (Danny Higgins, who was a teammate of D’Emilia, concluded his career with 6,091 passing yards).
D’Emilia’s five touchdowns tied a school record – the former Bridgewater-Raynham Trojan also caught a two-point conversion in his team’s win over the Corsairs.
The Bears will be idle this upcoming weekend but should be able to maintain their recent momentum in two weeks when they host Plymouth State at 4 p.m.
4. Dean College needs three more wins to wrap-up its inaugural Eastern Collegiate Football Conference (ECFC) Title. I was bullish on the Bulldogs prior to their first game of the 2019 season. And I still am after back-to-back wins against Anna Maria College and SUNY-Maritime.
Against the Privateers, the Bulldogs defense recorded 12 tackles for a loss of 60 yards, including 10 sacks for a loss of 58 yards. Tyzohn Poole and Desmond Dias combined for five sacks for 30 yards, while quarterback Terrell Watts threw two touchdowns while adding a third score on the ground.
Yesterday against Anna Maria, Watts tossed four touchdowns, while adding a fifth score on the ground (four carries for one yard). Dias led the defense with 12 total tackles, including two-and-a-half tackles for a loss of 15 yards.
If the offense and defense can duplicate their performance from the past two weeks then I expect the Bulldogs to win their final road game of the season against Gallaudet University this Saturday. A win over the Bison should provide the squad with enough momentum to cap their regular-season slate with back-to-back wins against Alfred State and Castleton University.
5. Randy Morgan continues to be a player to watch at Becker College. First-year tailback Randy Morgan has enjoyed a very successful start to his college career – yesterday against Nichols College, he established a new single-season record for rushing yards in a season by tallying 188 yards on 27 carries.
Morgan broke the program’s old record of 674 rushing yards in a season, which was established by Jacob Holmes in 2015.
Through six games this season, Morgan has rushed for 733 yards on 132 carries and seven touchdowns, while adding four receptions for 48 yards. The seven rushing touchdowns are the most recorded by any member of the Hawks this season.
Morgan has rushed for 100 yards or more in four of six games this season and should have no problem finishing his team’s 2019 season with 1,000 yards or more.
6. Springfield College remains in the hunt for a New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) championship. After starting their season 1-3, Springfield has rebounded quite nicely with wins over Coast Guard Academy, Merchant Marine, and Norwich Academy.
The Pride, who were certainly a team expected to contend for their second conference crown this fall, currently sit a spot below WPI, which beat Springfield in week four by a score of 35-21.
WPI is the only undefeated team in the NEWMAC. They host Merchant Marine this weekend in a very important match-up. A loss to the Mariners would help the Pride’s chances of winning the title, but of course, Springfield needs to win its remaining three games, including Saturday’s meeting with Catholic University.
Pending how the next four weeks play out, look for Springfield to play an extra game in November – they will either compete in the NCAA Tournament or a New England Bowl.
7. Coast Guard Academy’s Ryan Jones was a player to watch against Maine Maritime Academy on Saturday. Quarterback Ryan Jones enjoyed his best game of the season with the Bears by completing 26 of 34 passes for 353 yards and three touchdowns.
Jones concluded the contest by becoming the fourth signal-caller in Coast Guard Academy football program history to throw for more than 4,000 yards. Currently, Jones has thrown for 4,145 yards, including 1,382 yards through seven contests this season.
Jones connected with Justin Moffatt 13 times in his team’s 33-8 win over Maine Maritime Academy on Saturday. The 13 receptions were a career-best for Moffat, who broke the single-game record for receiving yards (256), which was originally held by Collis Brown, who hauled in 244 yards against Western New England in 2013. Moffat ended the game with two touchdowns.
It finally feels like spring in New England, which means a brand new season of high school lacrosse is set to begin for a few squads later this week – are you excited?
This spring, Noontime Sports will be producing some features and notebooks on New England high school lacrosse, which we are super-excited about – we hope you are, as well.
Let’s begin our coverage with our initial notebook of the season with some news and links from the world wide web and social media!
Mike Tobin and the Reading Rockets will begin their title defense next Monday, April 1st when they host Marblehead for a 4:30 p.m. face-off. Tobin should once again be the player to watch on Reading this spring before he heads west to compete for the University of Massachusetts. Tobin and the Rockets were recently featured in The Boston Globe last week – can they make it back-to-back seasons as champions? We’ll have to wait and see.
After falling short of reaching the championship game last spring, the Greenwich girls lacrosse team will attempt to reach that stage later this spring, thanks to 20 returners from its 2018 squad.
As noted in the piece on Greenwich, four players will continue their career at the next level, including Olivia Cann, who will compete for Johns Hopkins University. Fans can spot Cann this spring on the defensive end.
Catherine Manning, Alex Houlden and Alyssa Saraceni will captain the Peabody girls lacrosse team this spring, as noted in the Daily Item. All three seniors were captains for the Tanners last spring, which should bode well for Peabody, which hopes to erase memories of a postseason setback to Reading.
Peabody will entertain Gloucester next Wednesday, April 3rd with opening draw set for 4 p.m.
A new era of high school lacrosse is set to begin in Nashua, New Hampshire as both the boys and girls’ teams will have new coaches this season, according to The Telegraph.
Nick Sampson will oversee the boys lacrosse team – he is a New Hampshire native that competed for Daniel Webster College – while Heather McKillop and Kristen Peterson will be co-coaches for the girl’s team.
For B-R to continue its previous success, they will need to rely on its defense to fuel its offense. The team’s four captains, including James MacDermott, is confident in the defense but optimistic about what they should see from the offense this spring.
Stay connected with our Noontime Sports high school coverage on Twitter by following @Noontime_HS.
By NoontimeSports.com | @NoontimeSports & @Noontime_HS
The Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association (MIAA) unveiled its pairings (North and South) for the upcoming high school state tournament with most games tipping-off early next week.
Below are links to the North and South brackets – we will be keeping an eye on the numerous games through our high school sports Twitter handle @Noontime_HS, so make sure to follow for some game coverage, along with scores, news, and links.