BC HighFootball: Press

BC High Eagles pull off stunner

Shut out Crimson 

By Mike Farrell
Wednesday, December 3, 2008


LYNN - After BC High was trounced 26-0 by Everett during the regular season, few people thought the Eagles had a shot at knocking off the state’s perennial powerhouse with a Super Bowl appearance on the line.

But BC High did the non-believers one better, not only winning but shutting out Everett, 9-0, in one of the biggest playoff upsets in Eastern Mass. football history.

With the help of six costly Crimson Tide turnovers, the Eagles’ ball-control offense did just enough and got a timely Bill Kiley touchdown pass to Niall Murphy. They made amends for their only loss of the season by shocking a packed crowd at Manning Field.

“No one ever gave us a chance in this one,” said BC High coach Jonathan Bartlett, whose Eagles will face Brockton at Gillette Stadium on Saturday. “I told the guys that as long as all of us, all 74 of us, believed coming onto this field that we could win this game, that was all that mattered. That’s what happened tonight.”

The Eagles defense, led by linemen Rob McCourt (two fumble recoveries) and Mike DiMatteo (two sacks), had to stop Everett’s heralded running attack. BC High did manage to hold the Crimson Tide to 114 yards on the ground, but Everett was hurt by the unfortunate loss of leading rusher J.W. Forte.

The Tide senior injured his ankle on his first carry of the game, a 32-yard jaunt that appeared to have the team on its way to a big night. But he never was the same after that play, gaining just 13 yards on three more carries. Forte was used mainly as a decoy for the remainder of the game.

After the game, Everett coach John DiBiaso felt the injury to Forte, more than the three interceptions and three fumbles, derailed his squad’s shot at another Super Bowl title.

“We had so much (in the game plan) depending on him, revolving around him,” said DiBiaso, whose team finished the season at 9-2. “He’s an integral part of the offense. After he went down, our timing was off, and we just made a lot of mistakes after that.”

Those mistakes came in all shapes and styles. Bobbled pitches, muffed punts, and overthrows into the fingertips of Eagles defensive backs sent Everett home for the holiday season. All BC High needed to do was cash in on one of them, which it did.

In the second quarter, after the Eagles recovered a fumble on their own 26-yard line, Kiley (5-for-11, 90 yards) led his team down the field, converting two fourth downs before reaching the Everett 19 with less than 40 seconds left in the half. On the next play, Kiley stood in the pocket and lofted a 19-yard pass to Murphy, who won a race to the pylon.


Persistent BC High finally downs Everett 

By Mike Carraggi

Globe Correspondent / December 3, 2008 http://www.boston.com/sports/schools/football/articles/2008/12/03/persistent_bc_high_finally_downs_everett/

LYNN - If at first you don't succeed, try again. And again. And again.

That was BC High's motto as it beat Everett, the defending Division 1 champion, 9-0, in last night's MIAA semifinal matchup at Manning Field in Lynn. The victory avenged last season's semifinal loss to the Crimson Tide, as well as the Super Bowl-bound Eagles' lone blemish this season.

"All week, no one really gave us a chance," said coach Jon Bartlett. "We told the guys as long as all 74 of us, every single one of us, believed coming on this field we could win this game, that's all that mattered."

BC High will take on Brockton in Saturday's Division 1 Super Bowl at Gillette Stadium.

The Eagles proved to be the tidier team on a night when both were sloppy. The Tide turned the ball over six times, including two interceptions by BC High quarterback Bill Kiley and one by Niall Murphy, the duo that connected on the game's only touchdown.

"This is the best cornerback we got; he's been all year," said Kiley of Murphy. "It's just great to see him step up his senior year in the biggest game. He's my boy, he's my best friend."

Starting at its 26 after an Everett fumble, BC High put together one of its trademark drives, eating up more than five minutes and converting on two fourth-and-1 attempts, the first a fake punt that was turned into an 8-yard run by workhorse Tyler Horan, and a short run by Kyle Ewanouski accounting for the other. A 27-yard screen pass to Ewanouski then set up the sole touchdown of the game - a 19-yard strike from Kiley to Murphy with 36 seconds left in the half. Conor Flaherty, who accounted for the first 3 points on a first-quarter field goal, missed the extra point, but BC High headed into halftime with a 9-0 lead.

"We knew we had to open it up," said Murphy. "I put a double move on [Everett cornerback Jim] Noel, and Billy put the ball on the money."

Everett opened the game with a promising drive that fizzled. Starting at their 10, the Crimson Tide followed a 25-yard play-action pass from Joe Conti to Dio McCloud with a 32-yard dash by J.W. Forte that got the defending champs into BC High territory. The next three plays, all power runs by Alan Dancewicz, did not produce a first down, and coach John DiBiaso sent out Igor Garcia to attempt a 46-yard field goal that fell short.

BC High responded with its first drive, netting 41 yards on nine plays, keyed by a 21-yard pass from Kiley to AJ Okereke on third and 9. The Eagles, however, were stuffed on a fourth and 2 when Ewanouski slipped taking the handoff.

On Everett's ensuing possession, the Crimson Tide converted on third and long on a 20-yard scramble by Conti. But on the next play, Conti was picked off by his counterpart, Kiley, who was moonlighting as a safety. Kiley (5 of 9 passing for 70 yards) returned it more than 30 yards to Everett's 37. BC High was unable to take advantage, though, going three and out thanks to a jarring hit from defensive back Jesus Crawford, causing Okereke to drop a sure first-down catch. The punt pinned Everett at its 1, where the Tide were forced to punt it right back. However, the punt sailed out of bounds at Everett's 22-yard line, setting up Flaherty's 35-yard field goal, which bounced off the crossbar and through the uprights.

Everett looked set to answer BC High's field goal, getting a 43-yard run from Jean Bordeau that brought the Tide to the Eagles' 32. A few plays later, however, McCloud fumbled a pitch and defensive lineman Rob McCourt recovered, leading to the Eagles' touchdown.

Senior lineman Mike DiMatteo, who was injured in the first game of the year and returned to record a sack in the last game of the regular season, was a defensive force for the Eagles, sacking Conti twice.

"Still not over yet, though - we got another game Saturday," said Murphy. "This isn't everything."

Maybe not everything, but Murphy and the Eagles will enjoy it. It's been a long time coming.


 Eagles Take it to Air



By Dan Ventura
Sunday, October 5, 2008  

BC High used a punishing ground game to dismiss its first three opponents.

Yesterday, the Eagles unveiled a lethal passing game.

Senior quarterback Bill Kiley threw for a career-high 211 yards in the first half alone and also added a pair of touchdown runs as the top-ranked Eagles tuned up for a key upcoming showdown by shutting out Taunton, 35-0, yesterday at Viola Stadium.

“That’s what we wanted to do this week because everyone in the state knows we can run the ball,” said Kiley, who didn’t attempt a pass in the second half. “We know we have the receivers to be able to throw the ball and the line did a real good job of blocking.”

With two-time Division 1 Super Bowl champion Everett on the horizon Friday, the natural tendency would have been to look past the visiting Tigers. It was clear from the beginning, however, that the Eagles were ready to tackle the business at hand.

BC High (4-0) scored on its first two possessions as Kiley scored on an 8-yard run, then connected with A.J. Okereke on a 24-yard touchdown pass.

“We talked about it from the first practice this week not to look past Taunton,” BC High coach Jon Bartlett said. “We reminded the kids every day to come ready to play and they did that.”

The highly touted backfield combination of Kyle Ewanouski and Tyler Horan rushed for touchdowns, but the afternoon belonged to Kiley. Perhaps his most impressive play of the day came as a result of his one errant pass.

Midway through the second quarter with his team leading 21-0, Kiley threw a pass in the left flat that was picked off by senior linebacker Michael Middleton at midfield. He had a clear path to the end zone, but a hustling Kiley was able to grab Middleton inside the 5-yard line, punch the ball free and recover it on his own 1.

“Bill is a three-sport lettermen. He’s just a natural athlete,” Bartlett said. “The fact that he didn’t stop and watch the player return the interception all the way shows the type of competitor that Bill is.”

Facing a third-and-9 from the 3, Kiley hit Brandon Cipolla with a short pass and the junior wide receiver turned it into an 89-yard completion down to the Taunton 8.

Two plays later, Kiley called his own number and scored from the 6 to give the Eagles a commanding 28-0 lead with 27 seconds left in the half.


Nnamdi Obukwelu Anchors BC High

By Lauren Malone   |   Friday, October 3, 2008  

Senior defensive tackle Nnamdi Obukwelu finds himself in the thick of BC High’s storied football tradition, and is just one more Eagle who will be remembered on and off the gridiron.

The history of football can be found through the steel gates of the Dorchester campus, but also in the Brockton residence of the Obukwelu family. Football flows through the blood of Nnamdi and his four brothers.

His older brother Iffy also played at BC High. Nnamdi followed suit, as well as his younger brother Obum, who is a sophomore on the team. Who knows, maybe his two other younger brothers will continue the BC High connection.

Iffy plays at Harvard, which happens to be Nnamdi’s top choice for 2009 enrollment.

“Right now, I’m focused on this season, but Harvard is at the top of my list,” Obukwelu said. “It would be unique to play with my brother.”

But Nnamdi’s focus is on the here and now. The Eagles, who are 3-0 and ranked No. 2 in the latest Herald Sweet 16, have a solid opportunity to continue their winning streak and make it to the playoffs.

“It feels really good to have won the first three games,” Obukwelu said. “We worked hard this offseason, and we are starting to see it pay off on the field.”

Eight defensive players returned for the Eagles this season, with Obukwelu as one of the captains. He feels strong about leading his teammates toward another Catholic Conference title.

“We know what guys can do, and we know what guys can’t do,” Obukwelu said. “We have to stay focused. So far, we have beat pretty good teams.”

The Eagles’ collective ego has been stroked with three straight wins over Brockton, Andover and powerhouse Acton-Boxboro, but BC High cannot afford to become lax. They’ve got league encounters against ranked teams such as unbeaten St. John’s Prep, Xaverian and Catholic Memorial on the horizon.

“Most teams start out strong, and then they become complacent,” Obukwelu said. “That’s one thing (new head) coach (Jon) Bartlett keeps telling us. Don’t be complacent, keep working hard.”

Obukwelu likes his new gridiron boss, a BC High alum (class of ’87) who has been the school’s athletic director since 2000 and has coached on campus for 16 years.

“He knows his skills,” Obukwelu said. “He is in tune with what players want to do, and he has the ability to work us really hard for a certain game.”

Obukwelu has never taken a backseat on the field. He is 6-foot-2 and 240 pounds of heart and muscle. He gives his team everything he has to offer.

“Besides the physical play he gives on both sides of the ball, he is a vocal leader,” Bartlett said. “There is constant encouragement given to his teammates. He’s humble, has a great attitude, does well academically and is a presence on the team. There is no doubt in my mind Nnamdi will succeed at football, but as well in life.”

BC High’s success relies on the way the Eagles jell on the field and the consistency of their hard work. The loss to Everett in the postseason last year has the Eagles chomping at the bit, but Obukwelu won’t look ahead to a rematch with the Crimson Tide in two weeks.

“Right now, we are looking at Taunton this week, not Everett,” said Obukwelu. “We are focused on team goals, and our team goal is to win the Catholic Conference.”

Focused Eagles Soar

By Jon Raymond
Globe Correspondent / October 5, 2008

With a primetime matchup against Everett waiting in the wings Friday, the BC High Eagles made sure to take care of Taunton first, dominating the Tigers in a 35-0 whitewashing yesterday in a nonleague matchup in Dorchester.

No. 3 BC High, avoiding the upset that took down fellow Catholic Conference power and top-ranked St. John's Prep Friday night in Brockton, got touchdowns from four players on its first four possessions in the easy victory.

The Eagle defense also put up a dominating performance, keeping the Tigers off the scoreboard and not allowing a first down until near the end of the third quarter. BC High (4-0) held Taunton to less than 50 yards of total offense.

BC High coach Jon Bartlett said he'd stressed to his team not to look ahead to Friday's showdown against the fourth-ranked Crimson.

"We talked about it right from the first practice this week, not looking past Taunton," he said. "They've improved dramatically since last year. We reminded the kids every day to not look past Taunton, to come ready to play, and they did."

With the game at 21-0 as the half drew to a close, the Eagles nearly slipped up.

BC High quarterback Bill Kiley threw a screen pass near midfield that was intercepted by Taunton linebacker Michael Middleton, who had a wide open field for the return.

Kiley, however, didn't give up on the play, and caught Middleton at the 2-yard line, and forcing a fumble that the Eagles recovered. Three plays later Kiley connected with Brandon Cipolla for an 87-yard gain. The play led to an 8-yard Kiley touchdown run, giving BC High a 28-0 lead at halftime.

"They don't really let me do those drills in practice, so whenever I get the chance [to make a tackle] I'm going to try to do it as well as I can," Kiley said. "I had to make up for throwing the interception, and that's how I did it."

Kiley completed 8 of 9 passes for 226 yards and a touchdown and ran for two more TDs. Kyle Ewanouski and Tyler Horan ran for the others.

Bartlett said better weather conditions allowed BC High to open up its attack, leading to Kiley's big day.

"We have another facet of our game with Billy. He throws a great ball," he said. "Two out of our [previous] three games have been in monsoons, so we haven't really utilized him to his true potential. It was nice to see him have a good day today."

Kiley said the team wasn't about to bask in the glow of victory for long, not with Everett up next.

"We don't even really look at those rankings. That's just what the kids at school talk about," he said. "We're just getting pumped up for this game, because it's huge. We know they're beatable this year and we have a good team, so we're just going to go out and get a good week of practice and just do the best we can against Everett."

Rainy Romp to Victory

Eagles backs carve up Colonials

By Brian Lowe
Saturday, September 27, 2008


ACTON - This was the type of night in which one completed pass through an entire game still was good enough to win. It was the type of night in which a team could comfortably overcome two lost fumbles in the first half, including one on the opening kickoff.

BC High claimed both of those stats last night, but used solid defense and the running talents of seniors Tyler Horan and Kyle Ewanouski to top Acton-Boxboro, 23-9, in a rain-soaked battle of Eastern Mass. powers. The win keeps the Eagles unbeaten at 3-0.

“From Day 1, we talk about our defense setting the tone for us,” BC High first-year coach Jon Bartlett said. “They did that tonight. On offense we moved the ball, but at certain times we hurt ourselves. We knew it was going to be a close game.”

BC High held an 8-3 halftime edge thanks to a Ewanouski 1-yard touchdown and a safety, then expanded the lead to 15-3 early in the third quarter when Horan bounced off a tackler at the line of scrimmage and scampered 19 yards around the left side for a touchdown.

The Colonials (2-1) - who punted twice and threw a pair of interceptions on their first four drives of the second half - crept to within a touchdown late in the game, thanks to a pair of Eagles penalties. Trevor Jeanson returned a punt 23 yards and was hit late, giving the Colonials the ball at BC’s 18-yard line with 3:20 remaining. A-B’s offense stalled but, on fourth-and-16, the Eagles were called for pass interference on an incomplete pass into the end zone by Alex Kastrinelis. Jeanson picked up a 9-yard touchdown run on the next play.

BC High gained possession of the ensuing onside kick, then Horan (139 yards rushing) iced the win by racing through the line and going 53 yards for the game’s final score.

Horan and Ewanouski (67 yards, interception) were a two-man wrecking crew, accounting for all but 18 of the Eagles’ total yards on a night in which the elements dictated the game plan.

“Our first game against Brockton, it was pouring rain and we ran the ball down their throats,” Ewanouski said. “Tonight was the same thing, so it worked out well.”

After the Eagles lost the ball on the game’s opening kickoff, A-B had possession at the opposing 21, but settled for a Miles Kula 21-yard field goal. Then early in the second quarter, Ewanouski had the ball pop loose, turning the ball over to the Colonials.

“We talked about it at the beginning of the game that we had to limit turnovers,” Bartlett said. “In the first half, we didn’t and it was a close game at halftime.”

Kastrinelis attempted 16 passes but only had one completion, a 25-yarder to Jeanson on the game’s final play. Jeanson led A-B with 65 rushing yards.

“We had trouble moving the ball,” A-B coach Bill Maver said. “They’re good. They have some good backs. All around, they’re a really good football team.”

 Eagles soar by land

By Mike Carraggi

Globe Correspondent / September 27, 2008

ACTON - For most teams, playing in a near-torrential downpour is a nightmare. Ground-oriented No. 3 BC High and No. 7 Acton-Boxboro weren't complaining about the conditions. The Eagles denied A-B, 23-9, last night in a battle of special teams, defense, and field position at Leary Field.

"From Day 1, we talked about our defense setting the tone for us," said first-year coach Jon Bartlett. "They did that tonight."

With 2:31 left in the game, A-B (2-1) was a possession away from possibly taking the lead. After Trevor Jeanson's 9-yard touchdown run brought A-B within 15-9, coach Bill Maver opted for an onside kick. The kick splashed around the field, and after a scrum, BC High came away with possession and a win.

The Eagles (3-0), who outscored A-B, 15-6, in the second half, turned up the defensive heat another notch after halftime.

The Colonials were limited to three 1-yard runs on the first possession of the second half before punting. Favorable field position led to BC High senior Tyler Horan's 19-yard touchdown run, during which he shrugged off a pair of defenders. BC High took a 15-3 lead on Conor Flaherty's PAT.

"Horan did an unbelievable job," said fellow running back and captain Kyle Ewanouski.

The Eagles received the game's opening kickoff, but Niall Murphy never got a grip on the slick ball, and the fumble was scooped up by A-B's Jack Souza at the 21.

The Colonials settled for a 22-yard field goal by Miles Kula.

Murphy appeared to fumble the ensuing kickoff but was ruled down before the ball popped loose. Horan broke off a 34-yard run, followed by senior Jabreel Wingard's 17-yard run. After quarterback Bill Kiley's keeper was unsuccessful, Ewanouski was able to punch it in.

The Eagles padded their lead when defensive end John Jakobowski penetrated the backfield, chasing quarterback Alex Kastrinelis into the end zone. Kastrinelis threw the ball away. Intentional grounding was called, and because the penalty occurred in the end zone, it was ruled a safety, giving BC High an 8-3 advantage.

With time winding down in the contest, and the Eagles looking to run down the clock, Horan scored on the longest play of the game. A handoff up the middle turned into a 53-yard scoring scamper. Horan took a direct snap and scored on the conversion attempt.

In its first home game of the season, BC High takes on Taunton next Saturday

Boxers KO’d by BC High 

By Joe Reardon
Saturday, September 13, 2008


BROCKTON - Most teams would dread going into Marciano Stadium when Brockton High was coming off a crushing defeat. After the Boxers lost a tough two-point decision to Dracut in their season opener, Peter Colombo’s squad was looking to turn things around last night against BC High.

The Eagles had other ideas, however, taking a 14-point lead into halftime on the way to a convincing 28-7 win in their season opener. Jon Bartlett’s first win as BC High’s head coach came by controlling the running attack. Kyle Ewanouski rushed for 137 yards and a pair of touchdowns on 16 carries and Tyler Horan added 135 yards and a score on 13 carries.

“It’s good to get the first one out of the way,” Bartlett said. “We knew coming in we’d play well defensively.”

A steady drizzle stymied both teams’ passing attacks, but that did little to slow the Eagles, who are coming off an 11-1 season in 2007. Ironically, it was a 20-yard gain on a screen pass from quarterback Bill Kiley to Horan on the opening series of the game that was the biggest play on the Eagles’ first score. Ewanouski bounded into the end zone from the 3-yard line and Conor Flaherty made good on the first of four point-after kicks for the 7-0 lead with 2:08 left in the first quarter.

The turning point in the contest came when BC High went up 14-0 after Horan recovered a fumble on a Brockton punt at the Boxers’ 10 and proceeded to punch it in two plays later from the 6-yard line for the 14-0 advantage.

“Turnovers in this type of game are huge,” Bartlett said.

Ewanouski capped a five-play, 80-yard drive with 4:30 remaining in the third quarter with a 5-yard score to give the Eagles a 21-0 bulge.

“Frankly, they controlled the trenches and that was the football game,” Colombo said. “That’s a big, strong, veteran team.”

Brockton, which couldn’t get a consistent offensive rhythm going at all against the stingy Eagles defense, finally got on the board in the fourth quarter. Back Khalil James-Offley, who picked up 68 tough yards on 15 carries, broke a 38-yard run to give the Boxers a first-down at the BC High 7. Quarterback Sam Previte tossed a 2-yard scoring pass to Jamal Johnson in the left corner in the end zone and Klaycon Santos added the extra-point kick to make it 21-7 with 8:07 remaining.

The Eagles came right back and drove 66 yards on 10-plays, adding the final score on Kiley’s 1-yard keep to round out the scoring with just 1:38 left in the game.

No. 3 BC High dominates struggling Brockton

By Emily Wright Globe Correspondent / September 13, 2008  


BROCKTON - Kyle Ewanouski ran for a pair of touchdowns, helping No. 3 BC High overwhelm eighth-ranked Brockton, 28-7, last night at Marciano Stadium.

The Eagles (1-0) took advantage of a fumbled punt in the second quarter, taking over at the Boxers' 10-yard line. It took fullback Tyler Horan two plays to run it in, giving BC High a 14-0 lead.

"Turnovers in these types of games are huge," said BC High coach Jon Bartlett.

Ewanouski scored his first TD a little more than 10 minutes into the game and led the Eagles' ground game, rushing for 99 yards in the first half.

Bartlett, who was making his head coaching debut with the Eagles, said his experienced defensive line had a lot to do with the win. The Eagles returned eight starters on defense, and the unit kept the Boxers (0-2) bottled up all game. The loss was Brockton's third straight at home, dating to last season when the Boxers ended their year with a loss to Dartmouth in the Division 1 semifinals.

Bartlett knew his defense was going to be key in a win against a team that had scored 32 points in its opener last week

"Our defense is definitely our strong point," Bartlett said. "We have eight guys back from last year, we knew in the end we were going to play well defensively. The good thing is that they hadn't seen us yet."

The Eagles put Brockton away in the second half, getting short TD runs from quarterback Bill Kiley and Ewanouski.

Ewanouski's came first, with four minutes to go in the third quarter, running it in from the 5.

Brockton's offense responded midway through the final quarter, Jamal Johnson making an astonishing catch at the far left corner of the end zone to pull the Boxers within 21-7.

Kiley added a 1-yard TD run, though, to complete the scoring.

Brockton coach Peter Colombo blamed inexperience and a strong opponent for the loss.

"We're starting 10 new people on offense, and [BC High] is bringing everyone back," Colombo said. "They're very, very good. They're very physical and frankly they just handled us. They had control in the trenches and that's what wins in football games."

BC High is on the road again next week, heading north to play Merrimack Valley Conference power Andover.

New coach, same BC High

These Eagles want it all


Matt Lynch
For The Patriot Ledger
Posted Sep 05, 2008 @ 11:15 AM

QUINCY — The coach may be new, but the expectations haven’t changed.

One year after winning a Catholic Conference title and earning a spot in the Eastern Mass. playoffs, the Boston College High School football team has its sights set on a repeat – and more.

“The goal isn’t just to get into the playoffs,” said head coach Jon Bartlett, who took over for former coach Ron St. George and will continue in his role as the school’s athletic director. “The next step is to win in the playoffs, no matter who we play.”

Last year’s 11-1 season ended in less-than-spectacular fashion at the hands of eventual Division 1 champion Everett, which handed BCH a 26-6 loss.

This year’s beefed-up schedule, featuring Everett and perennial Division 1A power Acton-Boxboro, should prepare BC High for the tougher teams it would face in the playoffs.

The Eagles open the season in traditional fashion on Sept. 12 at Brockton.

“This is the toughest schedule we’ve had in a few years,” Bartlett said.

“Of our 10 opponents, seven or so are in the top 20 teams in the state, which is good. It’s what we want.”

BC High figures to rely heavily on its defense, which returns eight starters. The anchors will be senior captain Nnamdi Obekwelu, who will play tackle on both sides of the ball, and senior linebacker Jabreel Wingard.

“We’re going to have one of the best defenses in the state,” said senior fullback Tyler Horan, who will also play outside linebacker.

Senior captain Kyle Ewanouski of Scituate, another two-way player who is expected to be the team’s lead back on offense, will shift from linebacker to free safety on defense.

“He’s quick enough to play back there and tough enough to come up and be physical,” said Bartlett.

Offensively, the Eagles will rely on a strong running game out of a Multiple I-formation that boasts Ewanouski and Horan, but should go to the air more than they did in three seasons under St. George.

“(Senior captain quarterback) Bill Kiley has a real nice arm, and we’ll throw the ball with him as well,” Bartlett said of the Quincy resident.

Horan said the transition to Bartlett’s system has been pretty seamless, especially for seniors who played under Bartlett on the freshman team three years ago.

The Eagles are motivated to make a run at a state title.

“We’re not ready to go out like last year,” said Horan, a key member of BC High’s Division 1 state baseball championship team this year. “Hopefully we’ll go the whole way this year.”

With only one week until the season opens and more than six weeks before their conference title defense begins against Malden Catholic on Oct. 31, the Eagles say they are ready.

“The Catholic Conference – that’s our goal every single year,” said Bartlett. “The kids know that and they’re ready for the challenge.”

 BC High vs Mansfield Scrimmage


Posted by Chris Forsberg, Boston.com Staff September 3, 2008 08:01 PM

MANSFIELD -- We needed one last dose of preseason football before we launch into the 2008 regular season, so the Forsberg Cruiser swung down to Mansfield Wednesday night to check out the Hornets' scrimmage against BC High.

What do you get when you mix two potential top 10 squads (you'll have to wait until Friday's preseason top 20 to know if that's a true statement) on a beautiful fall evening? A bit of a sloppy battle between two teams that ooze potential, but should thank their schedule makers that they don't open up until the weekend of Sept. 12.

BC High led 14-0 at halftime (on two second-quarter touchdowns) in the game-condition scrimmage and that's the way it ended when the game was called after three 11-minute quarters (the entire scrimmage lasted only an hour).

After a snooze-worthy first quarter that featured more punts (4) than first downs, the Eagles dented the scoreboard by returning a fumble recovery for a short score with 9:22 to play in the second frame.

Taking over later in the quarter, the Eagles went to what made them so successful last season and pounded the ball down the field with some smashmouth running. Quarterback Billy Kiley kept the drive alive by hitting Kyle Ewanouski on a fourth-down pass with under a minute to play, then caught a blitzing Mansfield defense for a 15-yard touchdown pass (one play after a receiver dropped a ball in the end zone on a similar play).

What did we learn today? Check out the video highlights at the end of this entry, which feature each team's first offensive series. Here are a few quick thoughts:

  • Both of these teams are going to be very good. We really like the potential we saw from BC High, particularly on defense, and we think the Eagles will (cheesy pun alert) soar once they get comfortable in first-year coach Jon Bartlett's system.


  • BC High opened the game in the shotgun formation, but didn't experience much success with it (Its first play went for quality yardage, but an illegal block on a screen pass short-circuited the drive). Again, there's potential to mix it up, but the Eagles really shined when running the ball straight at Mansfield (which seemed to wear down ever-so slightly in that second quarter).



  • Both teams have some great athletes. BC High's defense is just a blizzard of size and speed. The defensive line is active and the linebackers cover the entire field. Teams are going to struggle to put points on the board against the Eagles (much like last season). We were equally as impressed with Mansfield's front 7, which was quick to the ball and ran well laterally to limit the Eagles on the edges.



  • Both passing attacks struggled. Mansfield will iron out those wrinkles as Jeff Mallett takes over for Mark Gilson. Kiley, who threw five TD passes a year ago, seems capable of spreading the ball around and adding a new dimension to the Eagles' offensive attack.



  • The folks in the Catholic Conference won't need to watch the highlights to know BC High has good size. That's a given every fall. It's really only be noteworthy if they didn't have big kids up front.

Catholic Conference Preview


Coach: Jon Bartlett (first year).
Last year's record: 11-1.
Playing surface: Artificial turf.
Football website: www.bchigh.edu.
Returning starters (8): Pat Moynahan, G, 5-11, 220, Sr.; Nnamdi Obukwelu, OT/DT, 6-2, 255, Sr.; Bill Kiley, QB, 6-3, 185, Sr.; Kyle Ewanouski, RB/DB, 6-1, 205, Sr.; Niall Murphy, WR/DB, 5-10, Sr.; Mike DiMatteo, DE, 6-3, 230, Sr.; Jabreel Wingard, LB, 5-11, 235, Sr.; Tyler Horan, FB/LB, 6-1, 215, Sr.
Returning letter winners (13): Dan Madden, Sr.; Korrey Colon, Sr.; Conor Flaherty, Sr.; Corey Thomas, Sr.; Tom Snow, Sr.; Mike McGowan, Sr.; Jake Pickering, Sr.; Mike Murphy, Sr.; Bob Devine, Sr.; TJ Chamberlain, Sr.; John Micciche, Sr.; John Jakobowski, Sr.; Pat Sullivan, Sr.
Strengths: Defense and skill positions.
Concerns: Adjustment to new coach and new system, offensive line, younger players.
Outlook: After an 11-1 campaign in which it dominated the Catholic Conference with a 4-0 record, BC High has high expectations. Former athletic director Jon Bartlett will step in as head coach and thinks his team is making a smooth transition from former coach Ron St. George. "Our goal every year is to win the Catholic Conference. That's always our focus," Bartlett said. "All teams in this conference are strong but I believe we will be very competitive." The Eagles will use a strong up-front defense as well as a talented backfield to try to win its second consecutive conference title. The defensive line has size and is highlighted by defensive tackle Nnamdi Obukwelu and defensive end Mike DiMatteo. BC High had the conference's best defense last fall, giving up just 9.2 ppg. Running back Kyle Ewanouski is one of the top running backs in the division and will have support in the backfield from Tyler Horan, the team's fullback.

Coach: Alex Campea (fifth year at CM, 61-49 overall).
Last year's record: 6-4.
Playing surface: Artificial turf.
Football website: www.catholicmemorial.org.
Returning starters (5): Josh Boyd, TE/CB, 6-1, 215, Sr.; David Marshall, QB/DB, 5-11, 160, Sr.; Delroy McDonald, RB/DB, 5-8, 180, Sr.; Brennan Williams, OL/DL, 6-6, 275, Sr.; Mike Minton, OT/DT, 6-3, 310, Sr.
Returning letter winners (17): Andrew DiBartolo, RB/DB, Sr.;Kurtis Bonnet, RB/DB, Sr.; Marc Campea, RB/LB, Sr.; Matt Campo, WR/DE, Sr.; Rich Casallas, G/LB, Sr.; Brian Daley, TE/LB, Sr.; Martin Giordano, OL/DE, Sr.; Joe Kane, RB/DE, Sr.; Sean Mahoney, OT/DT, Sr.; Brian Murphy, OG/DE, Sr.; Russell Reioux, FB/LB, Sr.; Jeff Tagger, WR/DB, Chris Walton, WR/S, Sr.; Mike Woodson, C/DE, Sr.; Andrew Zintiti, OL/DL, Sr.; Donald Bland FB/LB, Jr.; Lorenzo Warren, RB/DB, Jr.
Strength: Size and athleticism.
Concerns: Inexperience on both sides of the ball.
Outlook: The way Campea looks at it, his players may not have started many games last year but they were able to get time as role players. This year's team will benefit from that limited but valuable experience in '07. "We are working very hard this preseason," Campea said. "I am very optimistic about this team's chances to play well this year." Having a pair of linemen that weigh over 275 pounds (Brennan Williams and Mike Minton) will cause that type of optimism. Williams is the rock of the CM defense. Campea also said he likes his team's athleticism as the Knights try to build on their 6-4 record of a year ago.

Coach: Bob Almeida (first year at MC, 12th overall, 103-29-1).
Last year's record: 4-7.
Playing surface: Artificial turf.
Football website: www.maldencatholic.org.
Returning starters (8): Mike Hobbs, DT, 6-2, 210, Sr.; Mark Sylvester, DT, 6-3, 260, Sr.; Tyler James, DB, 5-6, 155, Sr.; Mark Morrison, DE, 6-4, 220, Sr.; Steve Souza, RB, 5-9, 160, Jr.; Matt Muldoon, TE, 6-3, 270, Sr.; Shawn Kelley, LB, 5-11, 230, Sr.; Mike Norton, LB, 5-11, 180, Sr.
Returning letter winners (3): John Martin, DT, Jr.; Joseph McConochy, DB, Jr.; Andrew DiSimone, DB, Jr.
Strength: Size and physicality on both offensive and defensive lines.
Concerns: Overall lack of depth and experience and adjustment to new system.
Outlook: Coming off a disappointing season that opened with a stunning 13-10 win over Xaverian, first-year coach Almeida is looking for his team to gain an identity. "We are trying to establish ourselves as a team that plays hard on every single down," said Almeida, who led Wilmington to a 9-2 mark last fall. Malden Catholic will be trying to learn a new system on both sides of the ball, in terminology and philosophy. "This is going to take time but these guys are starting to get it, slowly but surely," he said. MC will look to its leader, Mark Sylvester, who is considered one of the top linemen in the state, to set the tone on defense. Defensive back Andrew DiSimone will lead the secondary and Matt Muldoon will lead the offense at tight end.

Coach: Jim O'Leary (25th year, 169-82-2).
Last year's record: 6-5.
Playing surface: Grass.
Football website: www.stjohnsprep.org.
Returning starters (12): Andrew McHugh, FB, 6-0, 222, Sr.; Zak Kline, C, 6-1, 219, Sr.; Andrew Knowlton, T, 6-1, 293, Sr.; Andrew Dieselman, G, 6-2, 247, Jr.; Andrew Valeri, T, 6-1, 278, Sr.; Brendon Fielder, RB/DB, 5-10, 166, Jr.; Bobby Preston, K, 5-11, 165, Sr.; Brian Keenan, DB, 6-0, 185, Sr.; Griffin Cardew, LB, 6-0, 200, Sr.; Kevin Hilliard, LB, 5-11, 200, Sr.; Andrew McHugh, LB, 6-0, 222, Sr.; Martin Robledo, DT, 6-0, 257, Sr.
Returning letter winners: Too many to list.
Strength: Depth and both lines.
Concerns: Lack of experience at skill positions and linebacker.
Outlook: Prep will be returning the majority of its offensive and defensive lines but its former strength, skill-position players, is a question mark heading into the season. There will be a battle between four players at quarterback (Greg Donohue, Kevin Davis, Chris, Coady and Pat Connaughton). "All four players are tall and strong; we may not have just one starting quarterback all season. The position could be a real strength for us," O'Leary said. The Eagles will face a huge test early on as they have games on the road against Everett , Brockton, Dracut and St. John's of Shrewsbury. "That's going to be a tough time for us but I think this is going to be a tough, competitive team," O'Leary said. Prep will have a strong secondary, led by Brendan Felder.

Coach: Charlie Stevenson (16th season, 124-40-1).
Last year's record: 5-6.
Playing surface: Artificial turf.
Football website: www.xbhs.com.
Returning starters (10): Sparky Crossen, WR/DB, 6-1, 185, Sr.; Anthony Franziosi, DB, 5-11, 180, Sr.; Jordan Kelly, OL/DL, 6-4, 245, Sr.; C.J. Parsons, TE/DE, 6-5, 220, Sr.; Cam Colwell, OL, 6-5, 245, Jr.; Anthony Varrichione, QB, 6-5, 195, Sr.; Matt Guay, RB, 5-9, 185, Sr.; Tony Knight, RB, 6-0, 205, Jr.; Jeremy Brady, DB, 6-1, 180, Sr.; Matt Tuleja, LB, 6-0, 235, Jr.
Returning letter winners: too many to list.
Strength: Skill positions.
Concerns: Holes on offensive and defensive lines.
Outlook: Stevenson has amassed 124 wins during his 16-year tenure at Xaverian but will be looking to rebound from last fall's 5-6 campaing. Stevenson knows how hard the climb back to the top of a competitive conference will be. "We're obviously not the favorites going into the start of the season but our goal is to improve our play from week to week," Stevenson said. The Hawks' success could be predicated on how well their running backs (Matt Guay, Tony Knight) and wide receivers (Sparky Crossen, Jeremy Brady and Anthony Franziosi) perform. "The heart of our team is our skill position players; we'll go as far as they can take us," he said. The strength of his defense lies in the secondary, led by Brady and Franziosi as well. Guay will spend time at cornerback, the position Stevenson had intended on playing him in last season but wasn't able to due to nagging injuries.

Compiled by Pat Ouellette