Wednesday, September 18, 2013
10 Off the Top: Week 3 edition
By Scott Barboza
A smattering of observances, trends, anecdotes, factoids and musings collected from around Massachusetts football in the last week or so:
10. One way-too-early prediction: Marblehead is going to cause some waves in Division 3 Northeast.
9. It might still be early, but Middleborough looks to have a playmaker for some years to come in sophomore running back Eddie Hart. While not the tallest in stature (he's 5-foot-7), the shifty Hart dazzled again in Week 2 with a 52-yard punt return for a touchdown in addition to 130 rushing yards on 15 carries, with two touchdowns, in the Sachems' victory over Coyle-Cassidy.
8. It was a rough second half for Weymouth's defense against Bay State rival Natick last Thursday, but someone worth keeping an eye on is Wildcats middle linebacker James Bradley. The senior showed good instincts and sideline-to-sideline pursuit (against a fleet-footed Redhawks squad nonetheless).
7. And while we're on those Redhawks ... After a week, it looks as though Alex Hilger will be Troy Flutie's go-to target with Brian Dunlap lost for the season to injury. But while teams might soon begin giving Hilger a Dunlap-like treatment with bracketed coverage, that's only to create more space for fellow senior wide receiver Justin Robinson to work, particularly along the seems of the field, as he did with increasing frequency during later stages of Natick's win at Weymouth.
6. As in six hundred. In a wild 64-39 win over Swampscott, St. Mary's (Lynn) accumulated just shy of 600 rushing yards -- well, 570 to be exact -- but Connor Sakowich, Jordan Manthorne and Abraham Toe put on a show no one will soon forget.
5. After making his college decision on Monday, Central Catholic senior running back/defensive back D'Andre Drummond-Mayrie offered his evaluation of the Merrimack Valley Conference this year -- as well as a pet peeve about scheduling.
"Very, very good competition," he said. "Lowell's great. Andover's good. Chelmsford's always tough. Billerica looks really good, too, their quarterback [Jordan Bolarinho] is putting up crazy numbers right now."
But then, again, "We don't get to play Methuen any more though. I'm a little bummed about that. It was always a great game atmosphere."
4. And another thing about Drummond-Mayrie ... When you talk to Raiders head coach Chuck Adamopoulos about his star two-way player, the first trait he'll bring up to you is his humility. Adamopoulos added that the most difficult thing for Drummond-Mayrie in his recruiting process was informing the five other offering schools of his decision. He took the time Monday to call all of the prospective coaching staffs before announcing his commitment to local media.
3. The number of consecutive wins No. 1 Bridgewater-Raynham holds over No. 14 Xaverian entering Saturday's Game of the Week matchup.
2. Speaking of those aforementioned Trojans, here's another factoid for you. In Saturday's 13-10 win over Duxbury, B-R did not surrender an offensive touchdown. It marked the first game during Duxbury head coach Dave Maimaron's 9-year tenure in which the Dragons did not score an offensive touchdown.
1. Undoubtedly, the story of Week 2 was how B-R quarterback Matt Clement dutifully played in the midst of a chaotic day for his family.
Saturday morning, Scott Clement suffered a heart attack while running the track at B-R. He'd been training for an upcoming 5K race. If not for a couple of Good Samaritans who were also around the athletic complex at the time and called 911, Scott Clement's life could have been in even greater peril.
He was rushed to Brockton Hospital where he underwent emergency surgery to insert a stent.
With Matt by his side, Scott Clement had one final message for his son before being wheeled into the O.R.: "Focus on what's at hand."
"I couldn't believe that's what he told me," Matt told me Tuesday. "He's the one going into surgery and he's telling me to do that? I told him he needed to focus on what he was doing more."
Scott Clement, a quarterback in his days at Holbrook High, also told his son he was to play that night against the Dragons. Matt led the Trojans to their second straight road win, en route to seizing the No. 1 ranking in our Top 25 poll.
The first thing Matt did after passing through Saturday's postgame handshake line was pick up the phone.
"I was just sad that he missed it," Matt said. "It was a great game, and he loves this program. He loves football."
Scott Clement was released from the hospital Monday evening.