Monday, October 22, 2018

MIAA Football: Top 25 Poll Week Seven

Holliston storms into our Top 25 Poll for the first time this season after capturing the TVL Large title.

By Matt Feld (@Mattyfeld612)

With the MIAA Football regular season set to wind down this weekend for all teams across the state, SuiteSports is ready to unveil its final top 25 poll until the conclusion of the postseason.

In our final regular season poll, the top five remains the same although there is some re-shuffling as North Andover moves into the No. 2 spot for the first time this season. Natick catapults into the top 10 due its blazing finish to the season, while Walpole appears for the first time all season at No. 18 following a huge win over Needham.

Holliston, meanwhile, also makes its first appearance of the 2018 season as terrific line play cemented a TVL Large title and clinched the No. 2 seed in Div. 5 South.

Here is SuiteSports' brand new MIAA Football Top 25 Poll as selected by its panel of writers, correspondents, and editors.

1. Everett (7-0; Last Week: 1) Crimson Tide barely edged out St. John's Prep and Acton-Boxboro for the top overall seed in Div. 1 North securing home field advantage throughout the sectionals.  

2. North Andover (7-0; Last Week: 3) North Andover finished off a perfect regular season in style with a 35-0 win over Billerica. Now, the Scarlet Knights will look to prove that this year they are the kings of Div. 2.

3. St. John's Prep (6-1; Last Week: 4) St. John's Prep may very well be entering the postseasons as the top overall team in Div. 1, but that won't matter unless the Eagles can get over the hump and knock off Everett. 

4. Xaverian (5-1; Last Week: 2) The Hawks did not allow a point over their final 11 quarters, but enter the Div. 1 South tournament fighting the injury bug. As Xaverian looks to win the South for the sixth straight time, they will likely have to do it with each game being a rock fight. 

5. Duxbury (7-0; Last Week: 5) Duxbury is the clear favorite in Div. 3, and one of the more complete teams in the state as the playoffs get underway.

6. Mansfield (6-1; Last Week: 6) Congratulations to Hornets coach Mike Redding who won his 250th career game on Friday night as Mansfield claimed the Hockomock Kelly-Rex title

7. Acton-Boxboro (7-0; Last Week: 7) With a spotless regular season behind it, Acton-Boxboro now turns the page hoping to get a shot at two of the teams above them later this postseason. 

8. Lincoln-Sudbury (6-1; Last Week: 8) It's been quite the career for Tom Lopez who picked up his 300th career victory on Friday night. 

9. Natick (5-2; Last Week: 11) Natick has been on fire since dropping its first two games to begin the season. The relatively young Redhawks now look to extinguish some postseason demons from years past. 

10. Doherty (7-0; Last Week: 10) A win over North Middlesex Friday would almost certainly wrap up the No. 1 seed for the Highlanders in Div. 3 Central. That's awfully crucial if they hope to emerge from a brutal four-team section.

11. Catholic Memorial (5-2; Last Week: 12) Difficult first round draw for the Knights as they get set to take on Attleboro. One has to think, however, that there will be plenty of motivation to get a second shot at Xaverian.

12. Mashpee (6-0; Last Week: 13) The Falcons enter the Div. 7 postseason not only as three-time defending Super Bowl champions, but winners of 27 straight. 

13. Springfield Central (6-1; Last Week: 15) Anyone who hopes to beat Springfield Central should be prepared to score at least 40 points, because when this Golden Eagles team does not reach that marker its become a miracle.

14. King Philip (5-2; Last Week: 14) King Philip may not have won the Hockomock Kelly-Rex this time around, but get the chance to defend their Div. 2 crown beginning Friday against Braintree.

15. St. John's Shrewsbury (5-2; Last Week: 16) Playoff positioning still up in the air for the Pioneers who could finish as high as the top seed and as low as four depending on how they fair against a tough Marlboro team on Friday.

16. Shrewsbury (6-1; Last Week: 17) The Colonials are all-but guaranteed a postseason berth. Now its just a matter of if they will get create an opportunity to get some revenge on their cross-town rivals.

17. Central Catholic (5-2; Last Week: 18) Central Catholics enters the Div. 1 North field as a bit of a sleeper, but No. 5 Lexington is sure to be no easy out.

18. Walpole (5-2; Last Week: NR) For the first time this season the Rebels have made their way into our poll following an impressive offensive showing against Needham. Will Jarvis has the makings of a budding star.

19. Hingham (5-1; Last Week: 19) Despite being short-handed, the Harbormen continue to plug away earning the No. 3 seed in Div. 3 South. With a potential second round matchup with Walpole waiting in the wings, getting another crack at Duxbury will not be easy.

20. Tewksbury (6-1; Last Week: 20) Redmen took care of business this weekend, ensuring the road in Div. 3 North goes through them. 

21. Stoneham (7-0; Last Week: 22) There may be no clearer favorite in any division than the Spartans in Div. 6 North.

22. Needham (5-2; Last Week: 9) After looking like a legit Div. 1 contender for most of the first half of the season, the Rockets are in search of answers heading into the postseason. 

23. Falmouth (6-0; Last Week: 25) The three-headed monster of Kyle Cardoza, Kyle Connolly and Jack Murphy will make the Clippers an awfully tough out in a Div. 5 South field full of contenders.

24. Marblehead (7-0; Last Week: NR) The Magicians enter the Div. 7 North tournament as the clear cut favorite after running the table in the Northeastern Conference.

25. Holliston (7-0; Last Week: NR) Coming into the season, Holliston's offensive line was its strength and on Friday night it powered them to a TVL Large title. 

First 10 out: Lynn English (6-1), Wachusett (5-2), North Attleboro (5-2), Whitman-Hanson (5-2), Barnstable (5-2), Wellesley (5-2), Milton (5-2), Nashoba (6-1), Scituate (6-1), Reading (6-1)

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