Boston High School: Mark Guarino

No. 8 B-R looks for Super Bowl return

September, 1, 2011
BRIDGEWATER, Mass. -- Eighth-ranked Bridgewater-Raynham has become a fixture in the Division 1A Super Bowl at Gillette Stadium.

In each of the last two seasons, the Trojans advanced out of the Old Colony League and won a playoff game -- only to face Gloucester in the championship game. Both tilts against the Fishermen weren't so kind to B-R. However, the Trojans' recent track record has meant high expectations with anything short of a Super season is a bit of a let-down.

"They're not cocky or anything, but they expect a certain standard," head coach Dan Buron said of his seniors. "Their expectations are set really high now. Nick [Schlatz] and a lot of the seniors played as sophomores in the Super Bowl two years ago. And I think the big thing they'll take from the last couple of years is the senior leadership that those groups had before them. I think that's what they hope to provide for this team this season."

That leadership will be taken up by the Trojans' group of senior captains with quarterback Brad Delulis, running back/linebacker Branden Morin, lineman Eric DeMoura and Schlatz.

Schlatz and Morin will comprise a talented backfield that is dangerous as it is experienced.

"We have some big shoes to fill though," said Schlatz, a 6-foot-2, 185-pound two-way player. "It's important for us to take it week by week and win by win. As we get into the league play, we need to step it up and be ready to go."

The running back and outside linebacker committed the offseason to getting bigger, faster and stronger to aid his performance on both sides of the field. Schlatz's greatest asset on the field might be inside his helmet, however

"He's like having another coach out there," Buron said. "He's a great player, but he's such a smart player."

Schlatz has garnered interest as a defensive player from Assumption, Brown and UMass-Amherst.

His sights are set firmly on the immediate future though, citing the most important challenge facing his team was B-R's scrimmage against Brockton on Friday. Then, once that's through, it'll be on to the season opener at Duxbury next Friday.

"We're not looking forward too much, we're just focused on [Duxbury]," Schlatz said. "They came on our field last year and they embarrassed us pretty good, so we'd like to get them back this year."

While the Trojans would like nothing better than to take care of business, avenging last year's opening loss to the Dragons, you can be assured B-R will once again have its sights set on December.


2010: 8-3 (Lost in Division IA Super Bowl to Gloucester)
Coach: Dan Buron (19th year, 140-52-2)
Players to watch: Nick Schlatz, Sr., RB/LB, 6-2, 185 lbs.; Branden Morin, Sr. RB/DB, 5-10, 180; Brad Delulis, Sr. QB/DB, 5-9, 160; Eric DeMoura, Sr. OL/DL, 5-10, 180; Steve Wentworth, Sr. RB/LB, 5-11, 180; Dan Noviello, Jr. DL, 6-1, 200; Kevin Johnston, Jr. DL,, 5-11, 200; Matt Wabrek, Jr. E/DB, 5-9, 170.
Strengths: Experience at running back, linebacker and defensive back
Weaknesses: Lack of game experience on the line.
Outlook: The Trojans run-heavy offense is in good hands with Schlatz and Morin in the backfield. However, there is changeover on the offensive line and this will be Delulis' first season under center. "He's small, so people might not think he looks like a prototypical quarterback," Buron said, "but Brad's athleticism is going to allow us to some different things with the offense." Buron's also looking for Cain Vanderbrink, Mark Guarino and DeMoura to lead the young line. On the flip side of the ball, the Trojans have a wealth of experience on the linebacking corps and in the secondary with Schlatz playing alongside Wentworth. Also, look out for a pair of juniors in Johnston and Noviello to take a step forward on the defensive line.