Tag: Norwood

Thoughts & Observations From The First Two Weeks of Mass. High School Football

Arlington Catholic quarterback Isaiah Osgood threw one touchdown last Saturday in his team’s first Catholic Central Large (CCL) meeting of the 2021 season. (PHOTO: Matt Noonan/NoontimeSports.com)

By Matt Noonan

Two weeks of Massachusetts high school football are in the books. And a third is set to begin this evening with a few games to watch, including Natick (2-0) at Milford (2-0) — the game is scheduled for a 6 p.m. kickoff. 

Before we officially begin the third week, allow me to share some thoughts and observations from the first two weeks.

  • This week, we’ll be making the trek to Medford (1-1) — the Mustangs will host their initial Greater Boston League (GBL) tilt of the 2021 season by welcoming Revere (1-1) to Hormel Stadium for a 6 p.m. 

    Both teams scored week two victories with Revere beating Chelsea while Medford outlasted Cambridge. Medford’s win over Cambridge was their first on their home turf in three seasons. 

    As of this morning, Medford and Revere are two of four teams in the GBL that boast a 1-1 record, however, the Patriots and Everett both own identical 1-0 marks in conference play. 

    Lynn English, Malden, and Somerville are seeking their first wins of the 2021 season — could that happen this week? 

  • Last Saturday, I had the chance to watch two Catholic Central Large (CCL) teams compete at Hormel Stadium with Bishop Fenwick scoring an impressive 48-7 win over Arlington Catholic

    The game was highlighted by an impressive ground attack that was led by Troy Irizarry, who scored three touchdowns. The Crusaders’ defense was also fun to watch — they certainly did not make things easy on a Cougars offense that registered just one score after recording 30 points one week earlier against Lowell Catholic

    Arlington Catholic quarterback Isaiah Osgood has tossed three touchdowns this season — his third occurred last Saturday against Bishop Fenwick on a long toss down the far sidelines to Andrew Sullo
  • While it was only one game, I certainly believe the Crusaders are going to be a team to watch this fall, despite graduating some key pieces from its Fall II squad earlier this spring. Bishop Fenwick graduated 18 seniors last spring, but one might not know that by the way, this team has played in the first two weeks. 

    Bishop Fenwick quarterback Steven Woods will continue to be a signal-caller to watch — the same could be said for Costa Beechin (wide receiver/defensive back), Chris Faraca (wide receiver/defensive line), and Troy Irizarry (running back/defensive end). 
  • Going back to Medford-Revere, here are a few players I am looking forward to watching on Friday: Dominick Terranova (Medford | QB), Alvin Legros (Medford | WR), Isiah Blake (Medford | RB), Osman Elkouram (Medford | LB), Augusto Gonsalves (Revere | DE), Wilmer Rodriguez (Revere | RB), Davi Barreto (Revere | RB), and Max Doucette (Revere | LB).

  • Kipp Academy Lynn Collegiate football coach Jim Rabbitt joined me this week on the Noontime Sports Podcast — you can hear the show on Apple Podcasts and Spotify, as well as on other platforms, too.

    Jim and I discussed a variety of topics, including his playing days at Framingham State, his path to becoming the head coach of the Panthers, and what he and his team learned from their 2019 campaign, which saw Kipp Academy fall short of advancing to its first-ever state championship at Gillette Stadium.

    This week, Kipp Academy, which has won its first two contests, will look to continue its early season momentum when they travel to Georgetown for a 7 p.m. kickoff. The Royals enter the week three clash with a 1-1 record.

  • There are quite a few teams that boast a 2-0 record, but here are the squads — well, programs, to be exact — that I am interested in watching this week to see if they can pick up their third-straight win:

    East Bostons: The Jets soared past Brighton last Friday and appear to be the team to watch in the Boston City League.

    North Reading: The Hornets are averaging 47.5 points per game but will they be able to score six or seven touchdowns tomorrow against 2-0 Pentucket?

    St. Mary’s (Lynn): Keep your eyes on the Spartans tomorrow evening as they travel to Bishop Feehan for a battle of 2-0 squads.

    Malden Catholic: The Lancers have scored back-to-back wins to start their season against Gloucester and Weymouth, but face a tough test tomorrow against Scituate, which lost a heartbreaker last Friday to Duxbury.

    And a few more: Billerica, Chelmsford, Lunenburg, Wakefield, Marblehead, North Quincy, Ashland, Norwood, Dover-Sherborn, Norton, and Cathedral.

Mass. High School Football: Week One Highlights & Takeaways

Malden Catholic scored an opening night win last Friday against Weymouth. (PHOTO COURTESY: Matt Noonan/Noontime Sports)

By Matt Noonan

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.
  • Speaking of Gloucester, the Fishermen dropped their season-opener to Hamilton-Wenham last Friday evening by a score of 13-7.

    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.

    Sean Steeves was also instrumental in the win — he was named to the Boston Globe’s EMass Players of the Week after tallying three interceptions against Stoughton, along with seven total tackles.

    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. 

Daily Noontime: Monday, July 6, 2020

DNJuly62020

By NoontimeSports.com

Happy Monday, everyone!

We hope everyone had a wonderful weekend while celebrating America’s birthday safely. Did you enjoy a hot dog and hamburger this weekend?

Let’s kick-off a brand new week – well, technically the start of phase three here in Massachusetts – with the ‘Daily Noontime’ for Monday, July 6, 2020.

Have a great day, everyone, and remember to stay safe and healthy, too!


Noontime’s Headlines for Monday, July 6, 2020

Around The Rim With Bob Whitney: Welcome Back College Hoops

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Former Braintree High and Kimball Union star Nic Timberlake in action last year for Towson University. Timberlake is now a redshirt freshman for Towson this winter after last season’s injury-riddled campaign. (PHOTO COURTESY: Bob Whitney)

By Bob Whitney | @WhitneyBob

In case you haven’t noticed the 2019-20 college basketball season is off and running, highlighted by a nationally-televised doubleheader last evening featuring the top four teams in the men’s basketball preseason rankings: Michigan State, Kentucky, Duke, and Kansas.

For all of us veteran purists, it was hoop heaven, the talent was amazing but the quality of play was spotty at best given such a huge stage on opening night.

That aside, it is my pleasure to pen a weekly hoop column for the hard-working Matt Noonan and his many followers here at Noontime Sports.

I have covered one of the Power Five conferences – the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC), to be exact – for the last eight seasons, but this year I will focus on a little bit of everything but the primary focus will remain on all that is happening in New England – and that is a lot!

First of all, check out the Noontime Sports Men and Women’s New England D-III Basketball Preseason Top 10 Polls: (Men’s Basketball | Women’s Basketball)

A few thoughts from the basketball polls.

  • No surprise that Amherst College is perched at the top of both rankings. They have been the gold-standard regionally and a regular participant in the NCAA D-III Tournaments for years.
  • Speaking of Amherst, the men’s program suffered a sudden jolt in September when legendary coach David Hixon (after 42 seasons at the helm) opted to take a non-health sabbatical to deal with some family issues. The big question is can the program move on without Hixon’s leadership?

    Those close to the program feel that with the elevation of trusted assistant Aaron Toomey, who played under Hixon and helped win NCAA titles in 2012 and 2013, the transition should be seamless.

  • A game to watch (and to gauge how Toomey and his squad are managing the transition) is on January 10 when New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) rival Middlebury College travels to Amherst.

ODDS AND ENDS

  • There have been a number of rule changes introduced with the most important one being the extension of the 3-point arc from 17 inches to the international standard of 22 feet, 1 3/4 inches. Although testing of this change in the National Invitation Tournament (NIT) last year found little change in shooting percentage, it was felt by the officiating honchos that it would alleviate congestion in the paint by forcing defenders to guard shooters further away from the basket. Stay tuned on this change.
  • All eyes will be pointing to Cambridge, Mass this season to see if the Harvard University celebrated senior class, led by awesome point guard Bryce Aiken, can finally win an Ivy League title, as well as earn an automatic tournament bid to the NCAA Tournament.

    Better yet, the Crimson will have some home-cooking help in March as this year’s conference tournament moves from the storied The Palestra to Lavietes Pavilion, March 14-15.

    The Ivy poo-bahs move to a conference tournament for men and women was a no-brainer – the atmosphere is pulsating and the quality of play is as good as it gets.

  • A shoutout to former Marquette University assistant Brett Nelson who assumes the reins at Holy Cross after Bill Carmody‘s decision to retire from the coaching ranks.
  • Did you know that we have a number of the top coaches in the women’s college game led by the legendary Barbara Stevens, who ranks fourth in wins among college coaches at Bentley University, Harvard’s Kathy Delaney-Smith, Stonehill College‘s Trisha Brown, Springfield College‘s Naomi Graves, and Babson College‘s Judy Blinstrub. If any of you have a daughter that may be destined to play at the college level the price of admission to catch one of these coaches in action will help with a final decision.
  • In my eight years following ACC men’s basketball, I had the privilege to hear firsthand from some of the great coaches in the game, including Coach Mike KrzyseskiRoy Williams, Jim Boeheim, Rick Pitino, and Mike Brey. Buzz Williams was a real stitch in the press room. But most impressive among this elite group of coaches was the University of Virginia‘s, Tony Bennett.

    Obviously, Bennett’s run to the national title was the big news last year but most noteworthy was his recent decision to forego a well-deserved a big raise. Bennett felt that his family was blessed and thankful for what they have and felt that the money would be better spent in funding a program to help athletes transition to careers after basketball. Bennett is destined to be the voice of the ACC once Coach K and Roy retire.

A FINAL THOUGHT

Best wishes to Kristen McDonnell who left the Braintree high school girls basketball program after a ten-year run which included four D-1 state titles and a bunch of sectional crowns. McDonnell is seeking a new challenge as the Norwood high school boys head coach.

Keep shooting. See you next week!

Mass. High Schools: Games to Watch In Week Three (Sept. 19-21st)

GAMES TO WATCH HS WK3 2019

By NoontimeSports.com | @NoontimeSports 

Week three of the Massachusetts high school football season resumes today with Old Colony facing Keefe Tech which means its time to unveil our weekly games to watch and predictions, too.

Let’s see how we do this week – we have struggled the past few weeks with picks, but we think we have some good selections for today, tomorrow and Saturday!


Mass. High Schools: Games to Watch | Week Three

Old Colony at Keefe Tech (Thursday, Sept. 19th): The Cougars took care of business last week, defeating Avon-Holbrook 41-6 in their season-opener. Look for their week two effort to continue against Keefe Tech in Framingham. PREDICTION: Old Colony 28, Keefe Tech 17 

Newton North at Needham (Friday, Sept. 20th): This is a must-win for the Rockets, which have dropped back-to-back games against Natick and Tewksbury. Newton North’s Andrew Landry enjoyed a successful to start to his final season with the Tigers by tallying five touchdowns in a 33-0 win over Waltham last Saturday. PREDICTION: Newton North 30, Needham 14 

Latin Academy at Boston Latin (Friday, Sept. 20th): The Wolfpack are seeking their first win of the 2019 season, while the Dragons of Latin Academy enter Friday’s tilt with some momentum following a 16-14 win last week over Tech Boston. LA’s Robert Marek will be a player to watch in this game. PREDICTION: Latin Academy 21, Boston Latin 14 

Lynnfield at Medford (Friday, Sept. 20th): The Pioneers enjoyed a successful start to their 2019 season with a 43-7 win over Newburyport. Look for that momentum to continue against the Mustangs in Medford. PREDICTION: Lynnfield 30, Medford 10 

Millis at Lowell Catholic (Friday, Sept. 20th): Lowell Catholic enters week three as winners in their last two contests. They should continue that trend on Friday – look for a big game from Ryan PenrosePREDICTION: Lowell Catholic 21, Millis 10 

Watertown at Cambridge (Friday, Sept. 20th): The Raiders scored multiple points in the first half last week, while their defense provided a slew of challenges for the Arlington Catholic offense. Watertown will need both its offense and defense to duplicate its performance from last week against a Cambridge team that is averaging 32.5 points per game. PREDICTION: Watertown 30, Cambridge 22 

Malden at Somerville (Friday, Sept. 20th): Greater Boston League (GBL) play begins in Somerville on Friday – this is a tough matchup for a Golden Tornadoes squad that will tasked with finding ways to slow down Jamir Vernet and Louis MontinaPREDICTION: Somerville 32, Malden 10 

Lynn Classical at Danvers (Friday, Sept. 20th): The Falcons return to the gridiron after starting their season with 41-20 victory over Masconomet. Lynn Classical has faced some real challenges during the past two weeks and is eager to finally crack the win column. PREDICTION: Lynn Classical 35, Danvers 32 

North Quincy at Westwood (Friday, Sept. 20th): Jake Pfaff and the Wolverines used a total team effort to beat Medway last week. Look for Pfaff and company to continue last week’s success against North Quincy on Friday evening. PREDICTION: Westwood 28, North Quincy 13 

Walpole at Wellesley (Saturday, Sept. 21st): The Rebels look to bounce back from a 31-7 setback to Natick last week, while Wellesley looks to continue its early-season momentum. The Raiders’ defense has yielded 6.5 points through two contests. PREDICTION: Wellesley 22, Walpole 20

Lexington at Concord-Carlisle (Saturday, Sept. 21st): The Patriots’ special teams seemed to be the difference a week against Oliver Ames. Will they need that unit again against the Minutemen? PREDICTION: C-C 28, Lexington 21 

Medway at Norwood (Saturday, Sept. 21st): Look for Norwood to deliver first-year coach Manny Lopes his first win with the Mustangs. PREDICTION: Norwood 28, Medway 14