Whittier Wildcats Football '19

Whittier knocks off Greater Lawrence

HAVERHILL – The Whittier football team has been unable to fully enjoy Thanksgiving dinner in five years.

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Football, 11/27/19 » 0 Comments & 0.0 Stars

Whittier runs all over Salem


HAVERHILL — Whittier Tech senior back AJ Espinal spent the third quarter and half of the fourth quarter on the sideline Saturday morning as the Wildcats' reserves got their chance to show off.

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Football, 11/16/19 » 0 Comments & 0.0 Stars

Ipswich rolls past Whittier in non-playoff game

HAVERHILL — With a 4 p.m. start time, Friday’s match with Ipswich wasn’t an official night game, but the Whittier football team finally got a chance to try out the field’s new lighting.
And while the outcome wasn’t what they’d hoped, the Wildcats still felt the significance in the MIAA “non-playoff” game.
“Playing under the lights at home has been a dream of mine since my freshman year,” senior running back AJ Espinal said. “Even for the people who came before me, it was a dream. I’m just blessed to be able to play football.”
Whittier had three scoring drives in which it was successful on all five fourth-down attempts, but Ipswich answered each time the Wildcats closed the gap before leaving with a 36-22 victory.
Ipswich (4-5) took the initial lead, picking up five first downs on a 10-play drive which ended on a Cole Terry 6-yard run with 5:30 left in the first.
Whittier (4-5) responded with a 13-play drive powered by Espinal. He gained 45 of the 55 yards and two of his nine carries converted fourth-down tries. The senior capped the possession with a 6-yard run and the first of his two conversion runs to tie the score at 8-8.
Whitter’s ensuing possession ended with 72 seconds left on a 13-yard punt to the Wildcat 39. And Ipswich needed only four plays to take a 16-8 halftime lead, scoring on a 16-yard pass from James to Ethan Jean-Charles with 10 seconds left.
Although that was James’ only scoring pass, he continually aided drives by completing seven of his eight attempts for 104 yards.
“We’d seen some of their film,” Whittier coach Kevin Bradley said. “They didn’t throw the ball. We were trying to do a couple things and gambled. We wanted to be aggressive, and they caught us on it a couple times.”
David Lonergan provided the Tigers a 22-8 lead midway through the third with the first of his two 12-yard scoring runs. 
That score set off a flurry as the teams combined for touchdowns on each of the ensuing four possessions.
Another fourth-down conversion aided Whittier’s 12-play drive which Joe Iannalfo made successful on a 1-yard run with 4 seconds left in the period.
“We go for it,” Bradley said. “We drill it that we’re going to get it on fourth down. We want to keep that ball going.”
But Lonergan, who gained at least 10 yards on five of his seven second-half carries, once again scored for a 28-14 lead.
Espinal, who had 117 yards on 25 carries, had two fourth-down runs on the next possession. He finished it off with a 1-yard plunge and conversion to cut the deficit to 28-22 with 3:44 left.
A 53-yard Lonergan run and conversion with 1:17 left was the clincher for Ipswich.
“You can’t win them all,” Espinal said. “We didn’t give up until the end, and that’s what teamwork is all about. We’re a family no matter what.”
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Football, 11/08/19 » 0 Comments & 0.0 Stars

Whittier falls short in tourney opener

LOWELL — Whittier led by two points at halftime, but could not hold on and fell to Greater Lowell 28-16 in the first round of the Division 6 North tournament on Friday.

"We got out and set the tone like we wanted to," said Wildcats head coach Kevin Bradley, whose team lost to the Gryphons 23-14 in the regular season. "We knew we could play a better game than we did against them last time, and we did. But we made too many mistakes and just couldn't hold on in the end."

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Football, 11/01/19 » 0 Comments & 0.0 Stars

Espinal, Whittier drub Chelsea

CHELSEA — A.J. Espinal rush for 121 yards and two TDs as Whittier hammered Chelsea, 34-0. The Wildcats rolled up 350 yards of offense ... all of it on the ground. "A.J. and Joe Iannalfo (76 yards, TD), they make us go," said coach Kevin Bradley. Big Colby Rice, the grandson of Baseball Hall of Famer Jim Rice, again opened some gaping holes. Other top o-line efforts came from Ethan Burridge and Aidan Bull.   But the story Friday was the defense, which held the Red Devils to a mere 24 yards of offense. The defensive heroes were numerous but special kudos went to senior linebacker Dylan Fraize, junior linebacker Jeremias Collazo, junior linebacker Zach Ribeiro and senior defensive end Anthony Luse. The biggest play was a 54-yard interception return by junior Joshua Tejada.

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Football, 10/25/19 » 0 Comments & 0.0 Stars

Wildcats break in new turf with win

HAVERHILL – For the first time in almost a year, Whittier did not require motorized transportation to get to its football game. Instead, Saturday afternoon, the Wildcats strode out of their locker room then ran onto the school’s beautiful new turf field.

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Football, 10/19/19 » 0 Comments & 0.0 Stars

Whittier throws scare into unbeaten Shawsheen

BILLERICA — Whittier led unbeaten Shawsheen 22-20 at the half but the hosts answered the bell in the second half en route to a 39-22 win.
Whittier (2-3) got a strong effort from A.J. Espinal, who had missed the last 1.5 games due to injury. He carried 16 times for 131 yards and two scores. Niko Burke added a 12-yard TD run.
Coach Kevin Bradley said, "It was a great game at the half. The kids were playing great. I was so proud. It's starting to click. We had them on the ropes."
Bradley said the line was stellar led by Colby Rice, Ethan Burridge, Jack Lamariere, Eric McCarthy and fullback Dylan Fraize.
Next Saturday at 10:30 a.m. Whittier will be playing its first home game and its at the school's new stadium.
"Wait till you see it," enthused Bradley. "It's a turf field with an eight-lane track, lights and a Jumbotron."
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Football, 10/11/19 » 0 Comments & 0.0 Stars

Burke scores twice but Cats fall

TYNGSBORO — Niko Burke rushed for 82 yards and scored twice but Whittier fell to Greater Lowell 23-14. The other Whitier points came on a Ethan Burridge safety (tackled QB in end zone). Whittier's passing game struggled (0 for 7 passing) but a bright point was the defense. Coach Kevin Bradley praised linebackers Nick Allen, Jeremias Colazo and Zach Ribeiro as well as free safety Nick Allen. Bradley said, "The kids played well. The defense was all over the place. We need a little more consistency on offense."

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Football, 10/04/19 » 0 Comments & 0.0 Stars

Whittier losses defensive struggle

WAKEFIELD — Whittier had its chances, but couldn't capitalize late against a stout Northeast defense.

Trailing 12-0 in the third, the Wildcats made it a one-score game when Joe Iannalfo plunged in on a 5-yard touchdown and had a chance to tie midway through the fourth. But Northeast got a stop, and added a late touchdown to close out a 20-6 win Saturday morning.

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Football, 09/28/19 » 0 Comments & 0.0 Stars

Espinal, defense lead Whittier to shutout

DANVERS — So far this season, when Whittier puts the ball in AJ Espinal's hands good things happen.

The senior running back carried the rock 21 times for 136 yards and a pair of touchdowns, as the Wildcats blanked Essex Tech 21-0 Friday night.

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Football, 09/20/19 » 0 Comments & 0.0 Stars