Monday, October 13, 2014

Central Mass HS Football Power Rankings: 10/13/14

Behind one of the state's best lines, Shepherd Hill quarterback Drew Jean-Guilliaume has excelled both running and throwing the football.
By Joe Parello (@HerewegoJoe)

St. John's scored a big win over cross-town rival Shrewsbury Saturday in a game with big Division 2 Central playoff implications, and also one that shook up our Power Rankings.

First of all, it strengthened the Pioneers' case for No. 1, but it also sent the Colonials tumbling out of our Top-5, making room for a Division 6 power that has been on the outside looking in all year.

See our complete Power Rankings below.

Power Rankings

1. Northbridge: 5-0, 1-0 SWCL B. Division 5

Last Week: Ranked No. 1. Defeated Bartlett 35-14

The Rams started slow against upstart Bartlett, but quarterback Koby Schofer lifted them to yet another win, tossing for a second quarter touchdown to tie the game, then running for a pair in the third to push Northbridge's lead to two scores.

Plucky Grafton awaits the Rams next week before they play host to undefeated Tyngsborough.

2. St. John's (Shrewsbury): 4-1. Division 2

Last Week: Ranked No. 2. Defeated No. 4 Shrewsbury 52-20

The Pioneers ended any talk of a rivalry upset early, and may have put to bed some early-season questions about their offense. With junior Tim Cassidy now fully comfortable in the St. John's "blur," and senior running back Shane Combs running as hard as anyone, the backfield is set, and star receiver Davon Jones makes sure nobody can crowd the box.

The surprise of the young season for St. John's has been its defense, and that unit continues to impress with middle linebacker Sam Norton leading the way.

3. Leominster: 3-2, 1-0 Mid-Wach A. Division 2

Last Week: Ranked No. 3. Defeated Doherty 24-14

The Blue Devils have officially re-established themselves as a contender in D2 after an 0-2 start. Friday's big win over another hot team, D4 contender Doherty, showed that Leominster could put a game away, even when the Highlanders made a late push.

Running back Eddie Rivera and quarterback Noah Gray are quickly becoming one of the best backfields in Central Mass, and a now-stingy defense led by senior linebacker D'Andre Addo should make Leominster a tough out for anybody come playoff time.

4. Shepherd Hill: 4-1, 1-0 SWCL A. Division 4

Last Week: Ranked No. 5. Defeated Wachusett 53-24

The Rams needed to make a statement against D2 contender Wachusett, and boy did they ever. Star quarterback Drew Jean-Guilliaume and running back Nick Ostrowski each scored three rushing touchdowns, and Jean-Guilliame added a 46 yard touchdown pass to power the Rams past the normally stingy Mountaineers.

An interesting test at St. Peter-Marian looms for the Rams next week in what could be a D4 Central playoff preview.

5. Blackstone Valley Tech: 5-0, 4-0 Colonial. Division 6

Last Week: Unranked. Defeated Quaboag 42-12

BVT grabs out 5th spot ahead of Littleton by the slimmest of margins, and certainly many believe those two teams will get to settle things on the field in the D6 Central playoffs. We already knew about star senior RB/DB Ben Reiffarth, but the Beavers have opened up their passing game a bit with quarterback Andrew Carroll making the most of his attempts.

The senior signal caller only got to throw four passes against Quaboag, but completed three of them for over 90 yards and a touchdown. If BVT can run and throw, it's hard to see anybody slowing them down until deep into the postseason.

Dropped Out: 

Shrewsbury: 4-1, 2-0 Mid-Wach A. Division 2

Last Week: Ranked No. 4. Lost to No. 2 St. John's (Shrewsbury) 52-20

In the Hunt: 

Littleton (5-0), Shrewsbury (4-1), Auburn (5-1), Uxbridge (5-0), Tyngsborough (5-0), Worcester North (4-1), Maynard (5-0), St. Peter-Marian (3-2), Doherty (3-2), Bartlett (4-1), Wachusett (3-2)

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