2012 EMASS Football Preview

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Div 3 Patriot (Fisher)

Hanover

  • Last year's record: 6-5
  • Strength: Experienced quarterback.
  • Concerns: Offensive and defensive lines.
  • Coach: Brian King (5th season, 25-20)
  • Playing surface: Artificial turf
  • Schedule: Complete list of games
  • showReturning: 7 lettermen
    • Ryan Bennett, QB, 2013, 6-1, 190
    • Jon Nassif, C/LB, 2014, 5-10, 165
    • Dan O'Neil, DB/WR, 2013, 5-8, 160
    • Dylan O'Neil, DB/WR, 2014, 6-2, 175
    • Chris Rosinski, DE/WR, 2014, 6-2, 205
    • Nick Serruda, DE/OT, 2013, 6-0, 185
    • Shawn Stearns, RB/LB, 2013, 5-8, 160

In 2011, the Indian offense ran through tailback Matt Lane, who finished his senior season with 900-plus yards on the ground. With Lane gone, the Indians will look to a two-man rotation at running back between senior captain Shaun Stearns and junior Elijah Abi-Kheirs, who each bring something different to Hanover's "I" formation. On the other side of the ball, Hanover may go through some growing pains as it works with a large number of junior first-year starters. The return of junior linebacker Jon Massif should help anchor the middle of the field as Hanover's defense begins to develop. All eyes, however, will be on senior quarterback Ryan Bennett, who is back under center after throwing for nearly 1,000-yards in his first season as signal caller for the Indians. "It's nice to have someone that has 11 games under his belt at the varsity level," said King. "This year, he dedicated himself to getting better. He's definitely one of our strengths."

Middleborough

  • Last year's record: 2-9
  • Strength: Senior class.
  • Concerns: Quarterback returning from injury.
  • Coach: Pat Kingman (2nd season, 2-9)
  • Playing surface: Grass
  • Schedule: Complete list of games

The Sachems enter the season with 14 seniors, all of whom are looking to cap their careers at Middleboro with a winning season, something this core group has yet to achieve. The most interesting storyline this season for the Sachems will be that of senior quarterback Troy Rossi. Rossi is returning after his second ACL tear in as many seasons, limiting his time on the field to only a handful of appearances. Six-foot-four senior Andrew Card played under center last fall, and the four-year player will become Rossi's biggest target at wide receiver. Junior Lucas Poteau will be an important asset in the slot position and as a corner for the Sachems, and Kingman expects big things from sophomore Dylan Adams, whose toughness will be tested along the defensive line. "[The team's] expectations are higher" from last year, said Kingman. "I think that's because I've never lowered mine."

Pembroke

  • Last year's record: 10-1
  • Strength: Overall experience.
  • Concerns: First-year quarterback.
  • Coach: Robert Bancroft (30th season, 30th season, 203-102-6, including Whitman-Hanson)
  • Playing surface: Artificial turf
  • Schedule: Complete list of games
  • showReturning: 14 lettermen
    • Ken Blasser, TE/DE, 2014, 6-4, 195
    • Nick Burns, WR/DB, 2013, 6-1, 170
    • Ryan Chapman, RB/LB, 2013, 5-10, 165
    • Colin Clafin, RB/LB, 2013, 5-8, 165
    • Alec Frizzell, TE/DE, 2014, 6-2, 225
    • Alden Graham, OG/DL, 2014, 5-10, 200
    • Austin Graham, OT/DL, 2013, 6-1, 240
    • Eddie Hean, OT/DL, 2014, 5-8, 222
    • Ian Horkan, DB/WR, 2014, 5-11, 145
    • Tom Johnson, DB/WR, 2013, 5-10, 190
    • Justin McKinney, OG/DL, 2014, 6-0, 180
    • Nick Richard, C/DL, 2013, 5-10, 220
    • Brian Tinkham, RB/LB, 2013, 5-11, 220
    • Greg Wood, OG/DL, 2014, 6-4, 198

Last fall, Bancroft cited his offensive line as an area of concern, having graduated four offensive linemen from his 2010 squad. Now in his 30th season, coming off a Patriot Fisher title, Bancroft and the Titans are loaded up front with the return of all but one offensive lineman. One of the Titans' greatest concerns is at quarterback, where junior Cory Brandon and sophomore Billy Watts are fighting to fill the void left by Luke Nagle, who played two and a half seasons under center for Pembroke. Bancroft acknowledges an obvious growth period for whichever quarterback gets the job, but believes the experience and size of his offensive line will cover up for any mistakes. Look for Austin Graham, a 6-foot-1, 240-pound senior, to shore up the hole left by offensive tackle Dan McCourt. "If he brings that intensity Dan brought to the game, that will help us a long way," said Bancroft.

Quincy

  • Last year's record: 2-8
  • Strength: Quarterback; running back.
  • Concerns: Offensive line.
  • Coach: Bill Reardon (5th season, 13-30)
  • Playing surface: Artificial turf
  • Schedule: Complete list of games
  • showReturning: 15 lettermen
    • Pete Cedrone, RB/LB
    • John Cherwick, WR/DB, 2013
    • Viet Doan, RB/DB, 2013
    • Jaquan Harris, WR/DB, 2013
    • Alex Heffernan, WR/DB, 2013
    • Max Joseph, RB/LB, 2013
    • Gerson Lai, RB/LB, 2013
    • Jackson Lam, MLB/G
    • Tim McDonald, QB/DB, 2013
    • Tim Nazzaro, OL/DL
    • Shane Nazzaro, OL/DL
    • Paul Nigro, OL/DL
    • Andrew Schaff, QB, 2013
    • Mark Solander, OL/DL
    • Rich Turpin, OL/DL

Quincy has a large group of seniors back for the 2012 season and 24 returning letterman, which Reardon hopes will mean an improvement on their 2-8 record from last season. "We need the mistakes to be fewer and to execute early on," Reardon said. "We had some big injuries last year, so we're hoping to avoid that as well." Reardon praised the experience the team will have at quarterback with senior Andrew Schaaf leading the way. Reardon also said to watch out for running back Jalen Green and linebacker Jackson Lamb, who he hopes will "solidfy the defense."

Scituate

  • Last year's record: 6-5
  • Strength: Overall experience, strength; Off-season preparation.
  • Concerns: Roster depth.
  • Coach: Herb Devine (5th season, 30-14)
  • Playing surface: Artificial turf
  • Schedule: Complete list of games
  • showReturning: 11 lettermen
    • John Foster, OL/DL, 2013, 6-5, 265
    • Dawayne Kirton, RB/DB, 2014, 5-8, 175
    • Dave Mavilia, TE/DE, 2013, 6-4, 200
    • Mike Rosen, WR/LB, 2013, 5-11, 170
    • Dante Sacchitella, WR/LB, 2013, 6-0, 170
    • Tyler Serra, OL/MLB, 2013, 6-1, 210
    • Sean Shea, DL/OL, 2014, 5-10, 190
    • Curtis Spalt, DL/OL, 2013, 6-0, 190
    • Mike Stewart, QB/DB, 2013, 6-0, 185
    • Pat Twohig, RB/DB, 2013, 5-8, 150
    • Jack White, WR/DB, 2013, 5-9, 150

Scituate enters 2012 with some big shoes to fill on offense. While senior quarterback Mike Stewart returns (800 yards in seven starts) the Sailors loose both Matt King and Lucas Barisano to graduation. Barisano, after playing quarterback the first four games, switched to running back, allowing him to finish the season with more than 1,500 all-purpose yards. King, a halfback, was also a three-year starter at middle linebacker and captain of the defense. Junior running back Dawayne Kirton, plagued by injury his sophomore year, is considered by Devine to be one of the strongest players on the team, and poised for a breakout year. Fellow junior Noma Okundaye, at 6-3, 190-pounds, has had a strong preseason according to Devine, and will be a dynamic piece for the Sailors on both sides of the ball. Maybe the most exciting player on this team will be 6-foot-5, 265-pound offensive lineman John Foster, who is garnering a lot of attention from Division 1 colleges. "He's absolutely the best football player that I've ever coached on the offensive side," said Devine. "On defense, he's a captain, and as a defensive lineman, he's the real deal. We're going to go as he goes."

3 games to watch

Sept
7
Everett at Leominster

The Crimson Tide take a 25-game winning streak into this game against the reigning CMass Division 1 Super Bowl champs.

Oct
12

With Troy Flutie and company on one side and Ozzy Colarusso on the other side, all signs point to a great, high-scoring game.

Nov
10
Cathedral at Pope John

A rematch of the game that decided the Central Catholic Small winner in 2011. Cathedral won, 16-12, and went on to the Super Bowl.

Preseason Top 20

Rank Team Last year
1 Everett 13-0
2 BC High 10-3
3 Xaverian 6-5
4 St. John's Prep 4-6
5 Barnstable 7-5
6 Bridgewater-Raynham 9-2
7 Duxbury 13-0
8 King Philip 9-2
9 Natick 9-2
10 Walpole 9-3
11 Weymouth 9-2
12 Brockton 5-6
13 Mashpee 13-0
14 Reading 8-4
15 Andover 7-4
16 Needham 9-4
17 Mansfield 9-2
18 Central Catholic 6-5
19 Westford 6-5
20 Beverly 7-4