Boston High School: Joseph Erardi Jr.

New England Roundup: Connecticut

September, 14, 2011
9/14/11
2:30
PM ET
Xavier High School proved to be the wrecking ball in Connecticut high school football last season, when the Falcons went 13-0 en route to the Class LL championship.

ConnecticutXavier may have an even better team this season.

The Connecticut Sportswriters Alliance picked the Falcons as the state's No. 1 team in its preseason poll. Xavier edged Masuk by one point.

“You have to worry about complacency,” Xavier coach Sean Marinan said. “We haven't played a game yet. Pretty much everything they say at this point in the season is based on last year.”

It's based on returning talent as well, and the Falcons have plenty of it. On offense Xavier has two Division I quarterbacks in junior Tim Boyle and senior Pat D'Amato. Boyle has scholarship offers from Boston College and Syracuse, and D'Amato recently committed to Stony Brook.

The QBs split time last season. D'Amato will play wide receiver when Boyle is the team's quarterback.

“Tim's got a very strong arm and he's 6-4,” Marinan said. “He chose not to do too much this summer. If he had I'm sure he'd have more offers. He's what everybody's looking for in a quarterback.

“Pat's a faster kid, and a little more elusive. Basically we have two No. 1 quarterbacks.”

The offense also returns senior running back Mike Mastroianni, who rushed for 1,889 yards last season. In addition, wide receiver Ryan Murphy is drawing interest from several FBS schools.

The defense must replace linebacker Graham Stewart, who was the state's Gatorade Player of the Year and is now playing for the University of Florida, but returns seven starters. Linebacker Jovan Santos is among the returnees. Santos has committed to the University of Massachusetts.

The Falcons also have three linemen – Ryan Jacobucci, Austin Wezenski and Sean Marinan Jr. (coach's son) – who are being recruited by FBS programs.

“I think our defense will be strong again,” Marinan said. “I don't know if it will be as strong as it was the year before. Replacing Graham Stewart is virtually impossible. We do have some holes to fill and he's obviously one of them.”

Xavier, which beat Trumbull to win last year's LL title, will open its season Friday against Notre Dame-West Haven.

(Read full post)

SPONSORED HEADLINES