2009 EMASS Football Preview

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Div 2A Dual County (Small)

Arlington

  • Last year's record: 6-5
  • Strength: Hirsch is confident in his skill position players heading. In addition, the team's optimistic attitude and enthusiasm will prove important.
  • Concerns: Arlington is an inexperienced team. "We lost seven starters on offense and another seven on defense," said Hirsch. While Hirsch notes that the returning starters "have experience and have played," the team is definitely a mixed bag this year.
  • Coach: Dan Hirsch (5th season, 20-21)
  • Playing surface: Artificial turf
  • Schedule: Complete list of games
  • showReturning: 8 lettermen
    • Eddie Alvarez, OT/DT, Senior, 6-0, 235
    • Mitchell Coiley, LB/FB, Junior, 6-0, 225
    • Corey Dirico, RB/LB, Junior, 5-10, 180
    • Zach Lee, SE/DB, Senior, 6-1, 185
    • Greg Moulten, QB, Senior, 6-1, 185
    • Pat O'Neill, DB/FL, Senior, 5-9, 165
    • Joe Preston, DE, Senior, 6-0, 185
    • Gabe Salzer, TB, Senior, 6-0, 205

Last season was Arlington's first in the DCL Small, and the Spy Ponders finished second, behind 10-2 Bedford. "[Last year] was our first winning season in quite some time. I think that winning attitude has sustained itself and the kids expect to win," said Hirsch. However, an inexperienced starting lineup and a tough early schedule may make that charge difficult. Arlington opens against Newton South, which Hirsch concedes is "a very difficult test for us early on." In addition, the team needs to find a way to replace the senior leadership if they are to sustain last year's momentum. "After last year the expectations are very high and we hope to match the expectations," said Hirsch.

Bedford

  • Last year's record: 10-2
  • Strength: Bedford is looking at an experienced team and a strong offensive line. “We have a lot of kids coming back--six kids that have been starters for three years. They pretty much have a handle on what we do,” said Belcher.
  • Concerns: “We lost our best offensive player, best defensive player, and best lineman,” said Belcher, who is looking to replace graduated senior leadership on the team. In addition, depth is a concern.
  • Coach: Jack Belcher (6th season, 28-27)
  • Playing surface: Grass
  • Schedule: Complete list of games
  • showReturning: 14 lettermen
    • Steve Adams, CB, Junior, 6-0, 190
    • Louis Baker, OL/LB, Senior, 6-1, 200
    • Leon Barnes, SE, Senior, 5-8, 180
    • Kevin Cangiano, QB, Senior, 6-4, 200
    • Dylan Curtin, S, Senior, 5-8, 165
    • Dylan Gonsalves, OL/DL, Senior, 6-2, 260
    • Tim McDonald, TB, Senior, 5-9, 180
    • KC Mondello, OL/LB, Senior, 5-11, 185
    • Tim Pike, S, Senior, 6-1, 180
    • Trey Pizarro, DL, Senior, 5-6, 160
    • Ben Rose, FB/DL, Senior, 6-0, 205
    • Ryan Shaw, OL, Senior, 5-10, 260
    • Matt Tiano, OL/LB, Senior, 6-0, 210
    • Brandon Watson, CB, Senior, 5-9, 160

Last season, Bedford finished first in the DCL small with a 4-1 league record, finishing 10-2 overall. “Last year was the best year in school history and this team has a chance do well,” said Belcher. However, with only 37 students on the team, depth could be a problem if the team encounters injuries or illness. Bedford is looking to finish on top of the league again this year. However, after loosing several of its stronger players, "It’s a tough act to follow," said Belcher. If the team can replace its lost senior leadership and further develop its returning players, Belcher "think[s] this team can live up to it.”

Concord-Carlisle

  • Last year's record: 5-6.
  • Strength: Concord-Carlisle is strong defensively, led by its senior linebackers. In addition, Robichaud describes the group as having a strong work ethic.
  • Concerns: Much of the team lacks varsity experience - there are only four returning starters.
  • Coach: Mike Robichaud (1st season)
  • Playing surface: Grass
  • Schedule: Complete list of games
  • showReturning: 15 lettermen
    • Max Barrett, LB/RB, Junior, 5-10, 170
    • Luke Battle, OT/DT, Senior, 6-3, 275
    • Paul Bosco, C/NT, Senior, 5-9, 185
    • John Bumpus, TE/LB, Senior, 6-3, 205
    • Jibrail Coy, RB/DB, Junior, 5-11, 175
    • Eric DeBruzzi, DB/RB, Senior, 5-9, 170
    • Justtin Demers, DB, Senior, 6-0, 170
    • Cole Fischer, DB, Junior, 6-0, 180
    • Jaron Hargrove, RB/DB, Senior, 5-10, 180
    • Preston Jesse, OG/LB, Senior, 5-11, 190
    • Andy Mangian, LB/RB, Senior, 5-11, 190
    • Dillon Mariano, OT/DE, Senior, 6-1, 200
    • Joey Paleologos, OT/DT, Senior, 6-2, 240
    • David Reed, OT/DT, Senior, 6-2, 240
    • Ian Webb, OT, Senior, 5-11, 175

Concord-Carlisle is a young team this year. "When we’ve got an inexperienced and young team there’s a lot we’ll have to work on," said Robichaud. Robichaud is confident in his team's ability because "Culturally and attitude wise, it’s a very focused and hardworking group." In the preseason, Robichaud has prepared his team for the transition of leadership and skill. “We’ve talked about [it] since the spring, knowing that we’re not coming back with a lot of guys,” said Robichaud. Coming off of a losing season with few returning starters, this transition will be difficult for the largely inexperienced team. However, Robichaud hopes the team will “continue to build a good team culture, to improve every day and to really outwork any opponent.”

Tyngsborough

  • Last year's record: 4-7
  • Strength: Senior leadership and speed at the skill positions.
  • Concerns: Depth
  • Coach: Mike Woodlock (6th season, 35-21)
  • Playing surface: Artificial turf
  • Schedule: Complete list of games
  • showReturning: 7 lettermen
    • Matt Donohoe, TB/LB, Senior, 5-9, 165
    • Ben Durand, QB, Junior, 6-0, 165
    • Nate Estochen, OT/DT, Senior, 6-0, 210
    • Zach Foley, DB, Senior, 5-10, 170
    • Garrett Glavin, DE, Sophomore, 6-1, 205
    • Logan Rohrbaugh, WR/RB, Senior, 5-10, 170
    • Matt Ryan, LB, Junior, 5-10, 175

After a disappointing season last year, Tynsborough has high hopes for 2009. “Our goal is always to try to win our league. We want to have a winning season and improve upon last year’s season," said Woodlock. Coming off of a losing season with few returning starters, this goal may prove to be a significant challenge for Tyngsborough. "We have a few non-league games to start the season. We'll have a better idea of the outlook after week three," said Woodlock. One challenge Woodlock has to face is the depth of his squad. “We always have a problem with depth. We’re a pretty small school. We don’t have a lot of guys waiting in the wings,” said Woodlock. Despite the depth problems, Woodlock is returning senior leadership which he hopes will keep up team spirit. In addition, Woodlock noted the team has a lot of speed at the skill positions particularly in senior tailback Matt Donohoe.

Wayland

  • Last year's record: 4-7
  • Strength: Senior leadership and a strong group of wide receivers.
  • Concerns: Offensive line and tough schedule.
  • Coach: Scott Parseghian (9th season, 59-32)
  • Playing surface: Artificial turf
  • Schedule: Complete list of games
  • showReturning: 11 lettermen
    • Ian Bonner, WR, Senior, 6-4, 190
    • Jeff Brewington, QB/DB, Senior, 5-10, 170
    • Tayor Bridgeman, LB, Senior, 5-10, 190
    • Jon Bryant, WR/S, Senior, 6-1, 180
    • Devaugn Cooper, LB, Senior, 5-10, 180
    • Abe Freeberg, OT, Senior, 6-1, 220
    • Alex Kazarian, OT/DT, Senior, 6-1, 210
    • Dennis Kim, WR, Senior, 6-1, 190
    • Marcus Mitchell, DB, Senior, 5-8, 150
    • Tyler Morss, DB, Senior, 6-1, 180
    • Ryan Pesaturo, LB, Senior, 5-10, 175

With a large group of returning starters and a strong group of wide receivers, Parseghian thinks his team can be a contender in the DCL Small. “We hope to return to where we’ve been the last couple of years--in the hunt for the championship," said Parseghian. The team is returning six starters on offense and eight on defense. One area where Parseghian is excited about is at the wide receiver position “The wide receivers, as a group, are solid," said Parseghian. “We’ve run the spread offense and we have about five receivers we think can do the job." To really pull together, the team will need to work on the offensive line play. “They just need to come together as a unit and try to give us some time to run our passing game,” said Parseghian.

Weston

  • Last year's record: 4-7
  • Strength: Returning starters and their comfort playing with each other.
  • Concerns: Depth and replacing senior leadership.
  • Coach: Bob DeSaulniers (4th season, Fourth year, returning after six years, eighth year overall; 118-85)
  • Playing surface: Grass
  • Schedule: Complete list of games
  • showReturning: 8 lettermen
    • Chris Conlon, RB/LB, Senior, 5-10, 170
    • Jonathan Dieujuste, CB, Senior, 5-6, 145
    • Tom Freeman, RB/LB, Senior, 5-11, 190
    • Clarence Johnson, OL/DL, Junior, 5-11, 260
    • Greg Lanzillo, S/WR, Junior, 5-10, 150
    • Nick Neu, WR/CB, Junior, 5-8, 145
    • Tom Neufeld, OG/DT, Junior, 5-11, 205
    • Joshua Varghese, LB, Senior, 5-9, 170

For the past few years, Weston has started mainly freshmen and sophomores. This year, with a predominantly junior team, coach DeSaulniers is optimistic because the Wildcats have "quite a few returning starters who have already learned how to play together." Weston will have to overcome the loss of RB Joe Dell'erario and QB/S Ed Blum. While DeSaulniers is expecting a tough time replacing them and their leadership, he believes his team will still be competitive. "Despite the loss of two outstanding players, due to our strong off season program, we have a strong team." Yet Weston is looking at a tough schedule in the early part of the season with a young quarterback. "Schools are strong across the board," said DeSaulniers. "So the team has to always be at the top of their game. If we play well, we can have a good season."

10 games to watch

Sep
11

BC High has won both times they met in the past year, including last season's nail-biting Super Bowl.

Sep
11

Walpole hopes to put a tumultuous off-season in the rearview mirror as they start their 2009 campaign.

Sep
17

In an interesting non-league match-up, Hurd Stadium in Beverly will host its first-ever night football game.