Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Your MIAA Football Week 5 Headlines

Five weeks in, and nobody has been able to slow down, much less stop, St. John's (Shrewsbury) quarterback Steven Bucciaglia and the Pioneer offense.
By Matt Feld (@mattyfeld612)

Ed. Note- SuiteSports is pumped for our Matty Feld to begin this weekly segment, where he will look back at the biggest story lines from the previous weekend in MIAA football. Enjoy!

In the blink of an eye, the MIAA Football season is five weeks over.

For the most part things have gone as expected. Everett, Central Catholic, and BC High have emerged as the main contenders in Division 1, while Division 2 South is shaping up to be the most competitive section in the state.

In Division 3 Central, St. John’s (Shrewsbury) barely got by rival Shrewsbury on Friday to remain unbeaten, while Lynn Tech cruised once again in Division 8 North.

St. Mary’s (Lynn) has also been dominant, getting off to a 5-0 start where they have outscored their opponents 252-59, while Mashpee has done its part to set up a potential meeting with the Spartans in the Division 7 title game.

As has become routine, however, week five brought with it plenty of surprising outcomes, eye-popping performances, and a bevy of story lines.

Here are some highlights from week five of the MIAA season.

King Philip Rallies Late to Extend Streak

For most of Friday night, it seemed as though that King Philip’s state-best 17-game winning streak would come to a crashing halt.

After the Warriors struck first, Franklin controlled play for the middle two-and-a-half quarters.

The Panthers picked off King Philip quarterback Brendan Lydon twice. Franklin quarterback Jake Noviello, meanwhile, completed a 55-yard touchdown pass to Sean Leonard before running in a one-yard keeper to give Franklin a 14-7 edge.

The Warriors’ defense, however, refused to let Franklin gain any breathing room, setting up another fourth quarter comeback.

Lydon picked up his teammates, drilling Thomas Madden for a game-tying 31-yard touchdown pass with less than five minutes to play.

King Philip’s defense then forced a quick Panther three-and-out, allowing their star Shane Frommer to take control.

Frommer (31 carries, 159 yards) had nine carries, bringing the Warriors inside the Franklin one-yard line, to set up a game-winning 18-yard field goal from Cole Baker to extend the KP win streak to 18 games.

“We weren’t playing that great all game, but we knew that was in the past and all that mattered was the last drive of the game,” said Frommer. “We just followed what we have been doing and kept fighting until the clock read zero.”

Quarterback Change Doing St. John’s Prep Wonders

After considering the move throughout the start of the season, St. John’s Prep head coach Brian St. Pierre made the decision two weeks ago to switch in sophomore Matt Crowley at quarterback while moving senior Mike Yarin to wide receiver.

The move has paid dividends as, for the second consecutive week, Crowley threw for multiple touchdown passes, and this time amassed 288 passing yards in the Eagles' 35-17 road win over Catholic Memorial.

Crowley showed in-game signs of being ready for the starting job in Week 3 versus Everett when, in the second half, he helped the Eagles put up 21 points after Yarin was knocked out with a chest injury.

“I have been thinking about making the change,” St. Pierre said. “Matt (Crowley) has proven he is ready and Mike (Yarin) just gives us another weapon on the outside.”

Yarin, who has been explosive at wide receiver in his two games since moving over to the position, reeled in his first touchdown reception of the season on Friday. Crowley drilled Yarin on a slant route over the middle, who took off and ran the rest of the way for a 62-yard score.

“I didn’t get to see (Crowley) play in the second half (vs Everett) because I was at the hospital, but after I saw the film and knew he should be the guy,” Yarin said. “Safety and running back was something I did sophomore year, and I had a ton of fun doing so I was psyched to move back to a similar position.”

The move goes with Yarin’s decision to de-commit from a future in baseball at the University of Connecticut.

Yarin, who is considered one of the top baseball players in the state, said his enjoyment of football was simply too much for him to stop once high school ends.

“The brotherhood feeling in football is one of the main reasons I want to keep playing,” Yarin said. “Not only is it my favorite sport, but I feel like I have more of a purpose when I play football since it such a team first game.”

Lynn Tech Keeps on Rolling

One of the more exciting stories to begin the year has been the emergence of Lynn Tech in Division 8.

The Bulldogs are 5-0 to begin the season and have outscored their opponents by an astounding 206-43 margin.

First year quarterback David Barrios has proven to be a weapon both as a safety and under center, while Steffan Gravely and Keoni Gaskin have consistently showcased their premiere athleticism.

Gravely set the school record for touchdowns on Friday night, as his four scores brought his career total to 66.

Tigers’ head coach James Runner has noted how his team always takes the field with complete confidence in its ability.

“We’re playing with a lot of confidence right now,” Runner said. “Steffan (Gravely) and Keoni (Gaskin) have been great for us showing off their speed and carrying us on offense but our line has been great. Both of our lines have really come together and been terrific.”

The next two weeks will tell the tale for Lynn Tech who, after taking on Northeast, will have a heavyweight matchup with Division 7 power Lowell Catholic.

Other Notable Performances from the Week

Methuen quarterback Jordan Perdomo made a name for himself in the Rangers big 63-36 win over Merrimack Valley Conference rival Andover. Perdomo scored six total touchdowns – three through the air and three more on the ground – while throwing for 167 yards and rushing for 177 more.

Danny Abraham made up for the absence of quarterback Will Bowen, as the Eagles’ running back ran for 289 yards and four touchdowns to lead BC High past Catholic Conference foe Malden Catholic, 42-6.

In a battle between two traditional rivals, St. John’s (Shrewsbury) quarterback Steven Bucciaglia threw for 415 yards and three touchdowns, and added another score on the ground, as the Pioneers topped Shrewsbury, 46-35.

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