Editor's note: The Globe’s Michael Grossi takes a look back at the top high school football games of Week 6.
Plymouth North 15, Marshfield 0
This game was the proverbial eye opener for the rest of the Atlantic Coast League. Marshfield has been the kingpin of the ACL for what seems like ever. Plymouth North’s ability to silence them opens the door for the Eagles and Falmouth to duke it out for the league title.
In the game, both teams’ defenses came to play. Plymouth North didn’t let the Marshfield rushing attack get going. In the first half, the Eagles forced three 3-and-outs and really controlled the line of scrimmage. Marshfield was able to pass on the Eagles’ secondary in the second half, but Plymouth North was able to make key stops when needed. The linebackers for the Eagles were able to fill holes nicely on the inside runs while the defensive ends and cornerbacks were able to string out outside runs, allowing for a teammate to shoot in and make a tackle.
Marshfield’s defense was also impressive. Outside of a long touchdown run and one 50-yard drive, the Rams stifled Plymouth North. It seemed like the major concern for the Marshfield defense was to stop the inside power running of the Eagles. They did that effectively, limiting running back Matt Walsh to less than 50 yards.
Offensively, however, Marshfield looked lost at times. Since they never got the running game going, the Rams were never able to have time consuming drives. Also, after getting in a hole in the first half, they were forced to pass a lot, which is not the strong suit of Marshfield teams.
Plymouth North had good success on running off tackle on offense. Zach Zaniboni led the way with 78 yards on the ground. When running to the outside, the Eagles got good seal blocks from the tackles as well as their receivers, allowing the running backs to get to the second level. Plymouth North only threw a couple times. Quarterback Cody Merritt was a little erratic, making some quality passes while overthrowing receivers other times.
Other Top Games
Woburn 23, Wakefield 8: Heading into the season, Wakefield was considered by some to be one of the best teams in Eastern Mass. That hasn’t happened. The Warriors have only one win on the season and lost to a Woburn team that has scored over 14 points twice this season. A player to keep your eye on is the Tanners’ Chucky Ortiz. Ortiz scored in the win over the Warriors and has 6 touchdowns this year. He is an explosive runner and is one of Woburn’s main threats.
Concord-Carlisle 20, Westford 7: After going to the playoffs last season, Concord-Carlisle looks like it is ready to make another push for the postseason. The Patriots toppled Westford, which was ranked No. 14 in the Globe Top 20 at the time. The Patriots got a huge day out of George Craan, who scored all three touchdowns and rushed for over 200 yards. The Patriots begin Dual County Small play this Friday at Arlington.
Lawrence 22, Billerica 14: The Lancers held Billerica’s Nick LaSpada to just two touchdown passes in the victory. The key to the win was Nathan Baez. Baez rushed for 158 yards and a touchdown and passed for the game winning touchdown in the fourth quarter.
Wellesley 14, Natick 10: Natick is finally experiencing the growing pains I thought they would experience at the beginning of the season. The Red and Blue graduated nearly all of their key players from last year's 12-1 squad. They have lost two in a row, albeit to two teams that were expected to be pretty good this year. However, keep an eye on Troy Flutie. Yes, Natick has another Flutie and he is only a freshman. Wellesley has persevered since the loss of its starting quarterback, but it will most likely not have a chance to make the playoffs after losing to Walpole a month ago.
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 email@example.com. 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 firstname.lastname@example.org. 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 email@example.com 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 firstname.lastname@example.org.