Northeast Knights Football '17

Smalls comes up big for Whittier

HAVERHILL — Looking at the height difference between him and his father/coach, plus the fact that the two share the same name, it’s pretty fitting that Kevin Bradley Jr. is known around the Whittier football team as “Smalls.”
“We’ve been calling him that since he was six years old,” laughed Kevin Sr. “It’s like in that movie, ‘The Sandlot.’ I still sometimes say to him, ‘You’re killing me Smalls!’”
But Saturday morning, Smalls delivered a big performance on the eve of the playoffs. The senior QB threw for 182 yards and three touchdowns, all in the first half, leading Whittier over CAC rival Northeast in a shootout, 54-44.
After a tough stretch of two straight losses, Whittier (5-2) has rattled off back to back wins and could host a North Sectional playoff game this weekend.
The Wildcats have averaged 47.5 points their last two games and Bradley has been on fire, throwing for 355 yards and six touchdowns.
“I’ve called it a special year for us,” said Bradley Jr. “Senior leadership has come around, we’ve all come together and we’re just playing good football right now.”
Saturday afternoon, though, could not have started much worse.
After receiving the opening kick, Northeast (2-5) efficiently drove 70 yards on eight plays capped by a Zach Sanderson 4-yard TD run. Quite the workhorse, Sanderson rushed 28 times for 185 yards and three scores.
Northeast then recovered an onside kick and began to drive down the field again. It looked as if the Whittier offense would be down two scores before running a single play, but the defense forced a fumble.
The Wildcats then tied the game on Bradley’s first TD pass, a 33-yard strike to speedster Thomas O’Mahony.
“That was probably the worst start you could possibly have,” said Bradley Sr. “But the momentum switched once we got the ball, and then we went right back at them. We did a great job running and passing the ball. (Northeast) didn’t know what we were doing.”
Turnovers turned out to be key. Whittier forced three fumbles, two of which led to short fields and eventual scores. Corey Defusco and Cole Simonds both recovered fumbles.
Offensively, Bradley made sure to find his favorite target, O’Mahony, often.
O’Mahony, who came into Saturday seventh in EMass Division 6 with 62 points (9 TD’s, 4 XP’s), made three receptions for a team-high 87 yards and two more touchdowns.
“He knows where I am at all times and I know where he is at all times,” said Bradley Jr. on O’Mahony. “He makes everything a lot easier.”
Leading 24-22 at the half, Whittier opened the second half with a 54-yard drive ending with a Defusco touchdown. After a stop on defense, Defusco, a power back who led the team with 62 yards on 10 carries, broke a 16-yard TD to put the game out of reach.
Both teams traded scores from there, but it never got closer than a 10-point game.
“We’re climbing, and that’s where you want to be this time of the year,” said Bradley Sr. “I’ve had teams that didn’t have winning records, but we always try to play our best at the end of the season.”

Whittier 54, Northeast 44
Northeast (2-5): 8 14  6 16 — 44
Whittier (5-2): 8 16 22  8 — 54
First Quarter
 N — Zach Sanderson 4 run (Sanderson run), 7:42
 W — Thomas O’Mahony 33 pass from Kevin Bradley (Corey Defusco run), 0:56
Second Quarter
 N — Dillon Pineau 1 run (run failed), 8:26
 W — O’Mahony 18 pass from Bradley (Defusco run), 6:10
 W — Michael McAuliffe 7 pass from Bradley (Bradley run), 3:17
 N — Sanderson 4 run (Sanderson run), 0:57
Third Quarter
 W — Defusco 1 run (pass failed), 8:24
 W — Defusco 16 run (Defusco run), 4:42
 N — Sanderson 2 run (run failed), 2:21
 W — Shaun Mears 70 kickoff return (O’Mahony run), 2:06
Fourth Quarter
 N — Owen Halley 1 run (Alec Siose run), 8:54
 W — Julio Joubert 3 run (Mark Iamele pass from Bradley), 1:34
 N — Pineau 29 run (Javany Velez run), 0:33

WHITTIER (28-168): Corey Defusco 10-62, Thomas O’Mahony 8-58, Kevin Bradley 4-17, Julio Joubert 4-19, Pater Hamel 1-10, Shaun Mears 1-2; 
NORTHEAST (50-346): Zach Sanderson 28-185, Dillon Pineau 11-119, Jake Fitzgerald 1-19, Connor Joseph 3-13, Javany Velez 1-11, Owen Halley 4-1, Alec Siose 1-(-1), Patrick Michel 1-(-1)
PASSING: WHITTIER — Bradley 10-20-1, 182; NORTHEAST — Halley 1-2-0, 36
RECEIVING: WHITTIER — O’Mahony 3-87, Michael McAuliffe 3-45, Mark Iamele 3-31, Hamel 1-19; NORTHEAST — Sanderson 1-36
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Football, 10/21/17 » 0 Comments & 0.0 Stars

Greater Lawrence opens new field with romp of Northeast

ANDOVER - The renovations shined at the opening of Greater Lawrence's new football field Friday night.

The new turf was fresh, the new scoreboard illuminated the far side of the field and the new benches were painted to match the school's colors. And to their credit, the football team looked just as good.

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Football, 10/06/17 » 0 Comments & 0.0 Stars