Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Eastern Mass HS Football Power Rankings: Week 7

Quarterback Ollie Eberth made some clutch plays in St. John's Prep's overtime win over BC High.
By Joe Parello (@HerewegoJoe)

We're heading down the home stretch of the regular season, as powers jostle for playoff positioning, while several teams just hope they can make the postseason. With another big weekend of games in the rearview, check out our latest Power Rankings below.

Power Rankings

1. Marshfield: 6-0, Division 2

Last Week: Ranked No. 1, defeated Nauset 36-8.

The Rams are coasting at this point, and can lock up both the Atlantic Coast League title and the top seed in Division 2 South with a win against Sandwich. Then things really get going, as Marshfield gears up to defend its D2 state championship.

2. Xaverian: 6-0, Division 1

Last Week: Ranked No. 2, defeated Malden Catholic 42-13.

The Xaverian defense continues to smother opponents, but what should scare teams around Division 1 is the ever-improving Hawk offense. With Mike Pina settling in as the team's primary quarterback, Xaverian has found continuity and different ways to get the ball in the hands of play makers like Coby Tippett, Mekhi Henderson, John Dean and Gianni Mitchell.

A game at BC High awaits the Hawks this week, who will look to lock up the top seed in Division 1 South.

3. St. John's Prep: 6-0, Division 1

Last Week: Ranked No. 3, defeated No. 8 BC High 29-27 (OT).

Say what you want about the Eagles, but they know how to win close games. A thriller against BC High was no different, as clutch quarterback Ollie Eberth delivered the go-ahead touchdown run, and two-point conversion pass in overtime, then the defense came up with a stop when it needed one most, against BC's two-point try. The Eagles now have a chance to lock up the top seed in Division 1 North with a win over Bridgewater-Raynham next week.

4. Holliston: 6-0, Division 4

Last Week: Ranked No. 4, defeated Medway 34-0.

The Panthers captured the Tri-Valley Large title with a win over Medway last week, and can now turn their sights toward larger ambitions, namely repeating as state champions in Division 4. With quarterback Jack Barrett emerging as one of the state's best dual-threats, and a defense that gets better by the week, Holliston will be a tough out for anybody.

5. Central Catholic: 5-1, Division 1

Last Week: Ranked No. 5, defeated No. 7 Andover 30-14.

The Raiders locked up at least a share of the Merrimack Valley Large with a second-half surge against Andover last week, and can win the title outright against Lowell this week. As good as Xaverian and SJP have been, don't count CC out by any stretch, the Raiders can play with anybody.

6. Milton: 6-0, Division 3

Last Week: Ranked No. 6, defeated Dedham 34-23.

It's winning time for the Wildcats, who have a chance to wrap up an undefeated season in the Bay State Herget against fellow unbeaten Wellesley. Don't let the rankings fool you, this should be a close one.

7. North Attleborough: 6-0, Division 3

Last Week: Ranked No. 9, defeated Taunton 44-20.

The Red Rocketeers are another Division 3 contender fighting for playoff positioning, and their road gets a big tougher this week with a trip to perennial power Mansfield on the slate. It will be a huge test, but also a chance to lock up the competitive Hockomock Kelley/Rex with a perfect league record.

8. Duxbury: 5-1, Division 3

Last Week: Ranked No. 10, defeated Silver Lake 42-3.

The offensive fireworks continue for Duxbury, who will move onto face Quincy in a rematch of last year's de facto Patriot League Keenan title game. There may be less drama this time around, as the Presidents have limped to a 1-5 record, but the Dragons will still have their 8th consecutive league title to play for.

9. Reading: 5-1, Division 2

Last Week: Unranked, defeated Woburn 42-0.

Since a tough season-opening loss to BC High, the Rockets have been on a tear, winning five in a row and outscoring their opponents by a combined score of 217-27.

As good as Reading has been, the Rockets still have unfinished business in the Middlesex League, as a showdown with Arlington this Friday will determine the champion.

10. BC High: 4-2, Division 1

Last Week: Ranked No. 8, lost to No. 3 St. John's Prep 29-27 (OT).

Dropped Out: Andover (Ranked No. 7 Last Week)

Much like BC High, Andover shouldn't hang its head over a loss to Central Catholic, but the Warriors do fall out of our rankings for the moment. They'll lick their wounds against Chelmsford before what they hope will be a long playoff run.

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