SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

October 31, 2012

Northeast Conference Youth Football League playoffs kick off tomorrow

By Jean DePlacido Correspondent
The Salem News

---- — The “Baby Bowl” will kick off the Northeast Conference Youth Football League playoffs. All games will be held at Bishop Fenwick’s Donaldson Field beginning tomorrow night at 6:30, when the Peabody Raiders (8-0) take on Swampscott Big Blue (6-0-1).

The two unbeaten Titan teams, which are made up of first- and second-graders, did not meet during the regular season, and the Peabody team is one of only three to finished undefeated and untied out of the 48 in the league.

“We’re inviting the entire community to come out to support the boys,” said Joel Saslaw, who handles public relations for the Raiders and also coaches. “We especially encourage kindergartners and first-graders to come see youth football in person.”

The other age groups will play in the semifinal round Sunday at Fenwick beginning at 9 a.m. with the Crusaders (third- and fourth-graders). Salem will take on Swampscott, and both come into the game with identical 7-1 records. At 10:30, Peabody Black (5-3) faces unbeaten Lynn (8-0) in a rematch of a hard-fought game two weeks ago.

At noon, the Peabody Silver Spartans take on the Beverly Black Panthers (fifth- and sixth-graders). Both have 6-2 records, and the Panthers pulled out a win in the final minute during the regular season. At 1:30, Salem (5-3) faces Lynn (6-1).

The seventh- and eighth-grade Gladiators take the field at 3 o’clock when Peabody Black (7-1) meets Beverly White (6-2). Peabody won in the first game of the season for both teams. Unbeaten Beverly Black (8-0) meets Salem (5-3) in the contest between the first-place finisher and fourth-place team.

The top four teams from all divisions make the playoffs, and the winners will play for the championship the following week.