EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA


November 5, 2013

Central Catholic's run defense up to the task

My question of the week is the following: How will Central Catholic respond to last week’s first-round blowout of Lexington?

After some initial stumbling, the Raiders (7-1) were dominant against Lexington, but they had better not get cocky in their Division 1 North semifinal match-up because Acton-Boxboro (7-1) has been a powerhouse for years and it appears to have its usual strong running game. One of A-B’s backs, Will Tejeda, has scored 13 touchdowns and is tied for first in EMass. Division 1 and another, Thomas Saponaro, has crossed the goal line 11 times. The Colonials average 31.0 points a game, while the Raiders average 36.0.

Central, for the most part, has been effective against the run this year and, with the likes of Nick Boes and Markus Edmunds, coming up to make hits, it should be able to contain A-B. But it won’t be easy and I’m not terribly confident about this pick.

PREDICTION: Central Catholic 30, Acton-Boxboro 28


Chelmsford (4-4) at Lawrence (2-6)

The Lancers may have taken a step backward last week after picking up a pair of wins. Prediction: Chelmsford 33, Lawrence 14


Lincoln-Sudbury (5-3) at Haverhill (6-2)

The Hillies are certainly capable, but they’ll have to play much better than last week. Maybe this pick will help. Prediction: Lincoln-Sudbury 21, Haverhill 17

Lynn English (2-5) at North Andover (3-5)

Eventually, the Knights are bound to either play a complete game or get some breaks. This should be the week, maybe for both.

Prediction: North Andover 28, Lynn English 14

Andover (4-4) at Peabody (3-5)

The Warriors were quite impressive last week and, even if they slip a bit, should be able to handle the Tanners.

Prediction: Andover 34, Peabody 19

Whittier (5-3) at St. Mary’s (4-4)

The Wildcats will play much better, but will that be good enough?

Prediction: St. Mary’s 28, Whittier 20

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