The North team also includes Alex Moore, Lucas Bavaro and James Fagan from Division 1 Super Bowl champion St. John’s Prep, and Sean Antonuccio from Masconomet. Masco’s Dylan Mann was also originally selected to play, but a nagging knee injury kept him from participating.
The team got a slow start with practice, shaking off the rust and battling the wet weather last week. Everything has come around since then, however.
“We started practice last Monday, so we’ve been going at it for about two weeks leading up to it,” said Dooling, who will be alternating between defensive tackle and defensive end. “We’ve had tough weather with rain every night, and one night we had it cancelled. Other than that it’s been pretty easy — but practices have been tough. We’ve been trying to get mentally prepared.”
With all the talent and leadership on the North, it’s no wonder that the team has come around so quickly.
Bates, a hard-hitting linebacker, was named defensive captain for the North.
“It’s been a quick transition. We graduated last Sunday and the next day had football practice. It hasn’t been much of a summer vacation,” said Maag, who expects to play both quarterback and safety. “It takes a few days to get back. The first day we were rusty, but you gotta be patient, nd the talent takes over and you get back into it.”
This may be an all-star game of sorts, but the players aren’t planning on just coasting through four quarters.
“Our goal is obviously to win the game. I’m pretty sure coach said the other day that the North has only won two of the last 10 games,” Dooling said. “We’re hoping to make it the third one. We definitely want to win, but we also want to have fun; that’s a big part of it.”
Nine locals were selected to participate in today's 35th Annual Shriner's High School Football Classic at Bentley University: Dan Bauer (head coach) Beverly Mike Dooling Beverly Brendan Flaherty Beverly Ian Maag Marblehead Ty Bates Marblehead Alex Moore St. John's Prep Lucas Bavaro St. John's Prep James Fagan St. John's Prep Sean Antonuccio Masconomet