Mass. High Schools: Week One Football Picks

MASS HS FB WK1 PICKS

By NoontimeSports.com | @NoontimeSports 

The first week of the Massachusetts High School football season is here – it technically began last night with a few games – but before a few more contests commence later today, let’s dish out (and share) our predictions for week one.

As always, stay connected with our Massachusetts high school sports coverage on Twitter by following @Noontime_HS


Week One Football Picks: Friday, Sept. 6th, 2019 

Norwood at Walpole (4 p.m.): A new era of Mustangs football begins this afternoon when first-year coach Manny Lopes leads Norwood down the road to face the Rebels in an intriguing non-conference clash. PREDICTION: Walpole 21, Norwood 10

Ashland at Westwood (4:30 p.m.): The Wolverines finished 4-7 last fall, but return some key players on both sides of the ball, including some talented seniors that should help Westwood squeak out an opening day win. PREDICTION: Westwood 21, Ashland 18 

Springfield Central at Everett (5 p.m.): Everett returns a ton of talent on both sides of the ball, which should help the Tide roll to an opening day victory. PREDICTION: Everett 28, Springfield Central 20 

Needham at Natick (6 p.m.): The Rockets will once again be a team to watch in the Bay State Conference (BSC) this fall, but face a challenging week one test against a Natick team that will be led by quarterback Will LedermanPREDICTION: Natick 28, Needham 17 

Acton-Boxborough at Lexington (6 p.m.): A new era begins in Lexington with coach Mike Hill, who is bullish about his team’s size and speed, which should help the Minutemen claim an opening day victory. PREDICTION: Lexington 24, A-B 14 

Wellesley at Weymouth (7 p.m.): Matthew Maiona and the Raiders offense should have no problem locating the Weymouth end zone a few times this evening. PREDICTION: Wellesley 28, Weymouth 14

Dedham at East Bridgewater (7 p.m.): Both teams return just a few starters from last season, which makes this an intriguing match-up to follow. Dedham is coming off one of its best seasons in program history and will most certainly lean on its returners in this one. PREDICTION: Dedham 14, East Bridgewater 10 

Malden Catholic at Winchester (7 p.m.): First-year coach Bill Raycraft will lead a Lancers squad into its initial contest of the 2019 season with hopes of utilizing its speed on both sides of the ball to secure a week one victory. PREDICTION: Malden Catholic 21, Winchester 14 

Boston Latin at Cambridge (7 p.m.): The Wolfpack will pride itself on its experience this fall, which should help Boston Latin score an opening day win in Cambridge. Matt Susich will be one of a few players to watch this evening – the senior will play quarterback and linebacker for the Wolfpack this season.


As always, stay connected with our Massachusetts high school sports coverage on Twitter by following @Noontime_HS. 

Boston Cannons Announce High School Rivalry Series

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Boston Cannons Helmet. (PHOTO CREDIT: Reed Smith’s Photography)

By Matt Noonan (@MattNoonan11)

The Boston Cannons announced this morning their High School Rivalry Series, which will take place before select home games later this season.

The High School Rivalry series is presented by Plymouth Rock Assurance.

Catholic Memorial and Malden Catholic will be the first two teams to compete in the series – the two squads will face-off at Harvard Stadium on Saturday, May 5th at 3:30 p.m. before Boston entertains the Dallas Rattlers at 6 p.m.

Governor’s Academy will square-off against St. Sebastian’s one week later on Saturday, May 12th at Harvard Stadium with the game scheduled to commence at 3 p.m.

The final two matchups with take place in Hingham on Saturday, May 19th with the girls team hosting Braintree at 12 p.m. followed by the boy’s team entertaining Needham at 2 p.m. Boston and the Chesapeake Bayhawks will also compete in Hingham that same day with face-off scheduled for 6 p.m.

For more information on the upcoming High School Rivalry Series – HOP HERE!

Worcester State’s Spencer Sets Single-Game Records Against Fitchburg State

Worcester State’s Corey Spencer enjoyed another career day on Saturday against Fitchburg State! (Photo Credit: Matt Noonan for NoontimeSports.com)

By NoontimeSports.com 

Courtesy of our friend Steve Miller Jr. from Worcester State, here is a quick note he passes along pertaining toward Corey Spencer‘s outing against Fitchburg State: 

Worcester State quarterback Corey Spencer (Arlington, MA/Malden Catholic) set single-game records for passing (421 yards) and completions (38). His passing yardage (2667) and TDs thrown (22) this campaign are second-most in a single season with one game to play

Catching Up With Johnny Welch (Worcester Tornadoes)

Johnny Welch cranked two home runs against Quebec on Tuesday afternoon, which helped Worcester earn their ninth win of the season! (Photo Credit: Matt Noonan)

By Matt Noonan

WORCESTER, MA – Against the Quebec Capitales on Tuesday afternoon, Worcester’s Johnny Welch recorded two hits, two home runs and three RBIs, which lifted the Tornadoes to their ninth win of the season.

“We had to win [on Tuesday afternoon],” said Welch. “We’ve all got to start hitting, [and I think] we’re all starting to figure it out, but once we get rolling I think we’ll be alright.”

Welch has been the spark the Tornadoes have needed this season. The Medford native has recorded 25 hits, four doubles, seven home runs and 15 RBIs, and certainly hasn’t disappointed.

Noontime Sports caught up with the former Boston Herald All-Scholastic on Tuesday to talk about the season thus far, as well as his high school and college playing days.

On playing at Malden Catholic: “Just making varsity [was one of my fondest memories]. It was huge. That first year we had a great team, but just having the older guys taking me under their wing was a big thing for me.”

On his junior and senior year mentality with the Lancers: “My senior year, I was a captain, but the other years I knew I was going to hit in the middle of the lineup, so I had to do well. We had a great team, and I just happened to get good hits, I guess.”

On not being recruited to play college baseball: “I really didn’t get recruited [to play] anywhere, but [Saint Anselm College] was there, and coach [Ken Harring] at the time saw me, and he told me I could play every day up there as long as I had the grades, and I got in and played.”

On majoring in criminal justice: “Going [to St. A’s] I knew the school was tough, but just didn’t know what I wanted to do with my major, and I happened to take some courses and I fell in love with it, [and] just rode it out.”

On dealing with injuries at St. A’s: “I missed my junior year, but every other year during the offseason, I seemed to have [various] surgeries, but I kept going back and playing. In the offseason it was rough, but in the season I played, so I’ve had a bunch, but they seem to be holding off right now. I had [offseason surgery on] my shoulder, elbow, wrist, I’ve had a bunch.”

On not being drafted in high school or college: “The whole thing [going to St. A’s] was it was a wood bat conference, so I knew I was going to play every day, and hopefully I had numbers for someone to give me a shot. My senior year, I had a great year and I didn’t know if I was going to be picked up or not, and I didn’t, so I happened to try out for [an independent baseball team] and someone saw me. I really didn’t talk to anybody [about the MLB draft]. In high school, I didn’t think much of it. I was a little shorter, didn’t really run as well, so I didn’t think anything of it. In college, we had a guy drafted the year before [I arrived], so I thought maybe I might get a shot, but it didn’t work out.”

On his first year playing Independent Baseball: “I really didn’t know too much about Indy ball. I had a buddy who played, and I knew he was pretty legit, so when I got to Brockton I knew it was the real deal. Pitching is better, guys are older and know what they’re doing, and then I got released and North Shore picked me up and I learned a lot from those guys [on the Spirit]. They helped me out a ton.”

Johnny Welch celebrates one of his two home runs on Tuesday with Jerod Edmonson! (Photo Credit: Matt Noonan)

On his success in the Frontier League: “I got to play every day. My manager told me, ‘you’re going to play every day, so it is what it is, figure it out.’ So by seeing pitches and being there and kind of getting that chance [was what helped me succeed with the Florence Freedom]. I finally got the opportunity to play every day, and it paid off.”

On playing with the Pittsfield Colonials: “I knew a few of the guys, and we had an awesome team last season. I actually liked playing [at Wahconah Park]. I loved hitting there, [and] the atmosphere was a little different [compared to Worcester], but I loved playing there and hitting there, too.”

On being signed by the Tornadoes: “It was huge. When we went into the draft, [due to the Colonials folding] I didn’t know what was going to happen with the whole team, they wanted to keep us together, but it didn’t work out. I’m glad Worcester picked me up, [and] I knew I was going to play every day, so I just wanted to get that opportunity again.”

On his success with the Tornadoes thus far: “I’m not really sure. [On Monday] I struggled, the day before I struggled, [but on Tuesday afternoon] I just told myself to see the ball and try to hit it. And finally, I actually made some contact, got some balls out [of the park]. I’m just trying to relax, and not trying to do too much [at the plate].”

On his pre-game ritual: “I get ready early, put some red hot on, and try to get out [to the field] early and stretch.”

On what songs gets him pumped for games: “I love techno, [some] deadmau5, [and] some Tiesto to get me fired up.”

On being able to play baseball in Massachusetts: “It’s great, especially for my family. When I was out in Kentucky it was tough for them to get out there, but now if people want to come see me they can, [so] it’s good to be near home, it makes you feel safer.”