The focus was on a number.
Tom Lopez just had a different one on his mind than nearly everyone else in attendance at Lincoln-Sudbury Friday night.
Junior tailback Mark Hogan rushed for a career-high 313 yards and four touchdowns as Lincoln-Sudbury presented Lopez with his 200th career victory in a 48-23 non-league romp over visiting St. Bernard's of Fitchburg.
"This means a lot to this year's team, because we're 4-0," said Lopez, now in his 29th season on the Warrior sideline. "It's 4-0, not 200 -- 200 is something we'll think about after the season. Right now, we have to concentrate on (Dual County League rival) Wayland next week."
His focus from start to finish was on the game, and no distractions. When senior Nick Von Stakelberg snuck up and doused Lopez with the Gatorade shower with 15 seconds remaining, and L-S comfortably ahead, the coach turned for a brief second. Then he turned back to game, not pleased with the Warriors' pass defense.
At game's end, senior captains Steve Baillargeon, Justin Nicholson and David Rocklage presented their coach with a game ball. He also received a plaque commemorating the milestone from the players and parents.
"I don't think the 200th win itself means that much, I think it's more all the different people that he's been around for all those victories," said Lopez's son Mike, who played for his father in the mid-'90s and now has returned to be a member of his staff. "200 wins doesn't come in one night. It's 29-year process, so it's 29 different senior graduating classes. If you asked him, it's all the different kids, all the people that are back tonight, are the reasons that this is valued."
Hogan certainly was great value against St. Bernard's. On Lincoln-Sudbury's second play from scrimmage, the 5-foot-10, 185-pound back took a pitch from quarterback Mark Collins and sprinted 80 yards for a touchdown. St. Bernard's answered with a 25-yard scoring pass -- Luke Leger to Ryan Mullaney -- in the first quarter for a 7-7 tie. But the Warriors surged to a 21-7 halftime cushion on a pair of short runs by Darren Cromwell (5 yards) and Jonathan McIvor (2 yards). Hogan handed the Warriors a 28-7 lead with a 5-yard run on the first series of the second half. He capped his night with 53- and 61-yard scoring jaunts.
"It's great that we were able to get coach his 200th win, we've been focusing on going 4-0 and going into DCL play undefeated," said Hogan, who finally feels that he is back to full strength after suffering a stress fracture in his lower back last January. Hogan was used sparingly in the first two wins over Medfield and Rockland before a 120-yard performance against Hingham last week.
Next up is Friday night's DCL showdown against visiting Wayland, which is 3-0 heading into Saturday's league encounter at Boston Latin. Lopez, a Newton South grad, recorded his first victory in 1978 with a 15-0 victory over Ed Leary's Acton-Boxboro squad.
Several reporters and editors contribute updates, news and analysis to the High School Sports Blog.
- Bob Holmes: A Reading resident (Go Rockets!) and Boston College graduate, Holmes is the Boston Globe High School Sports Editor. We remind you now that his weekly picks are often made in jest so everyone just calm down when he picks against Everett for 11 straight weeks. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @GlobeHolmes.
- Craig Larson: A native of West Springfield (Leo Durocher anyone? Tim Daggett?) and Curry College graduate (a proud Colonel!), Larson is the sports editor for the Globe's regional sections: South, West and North, as well as a frequent contributor on the college beat. Abington to Xaverian: it all starts with the schools. Have a compelling story idea? Contact him at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @GlobeLars.
- Zuri Berry: Berry attended the same high school as sports legends O.J. Simpson and Joe DiMaggio. (Guess which one is his hero.) He's a South Boston resident (formerly of Eastie) and the editor of the High School Sports blog as well as the go-to-guy for everything high school sports on Boston.com. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter @GlobeSchools for all of the latest updates.
Then there are our fall correspondents:
- Anthony Gulizia | @gulizia_a | Div. 1 football
- Eric Russo | @erusso22 | Div. 2 football
- Stephen Sellner | @stephen_sellner | Div. 3 football
- Andrew MacDougall | @Andy_MacDougall | Div. 4 football
- Greg Joyce | @GJoyce9 | Div. 5 football
- Lorenzo Recupero | @LorenzoRecupero | Div. 6 football
- Liz Torres | @etorres446 | Girls volleyball
To reach the high school sports department, e-mail email@example.com.