Football Scrimmages Cap Week of Firsts for High School Sports
Xaverian Wall of Fame, Westwood Gridiron Club cookout provide weekend highlights.
This weekend saw the state's top-ranked football team from Xaverian Brothers High School cap the first week of the the high school athletic season with a visit from Bridgewater-Raynham Saturday morning for the first scrimmage of the defending Super Bowl champions.
Walking into the school for the first time following the game in a nearly 19-year sportswriting career was nothing short of inspirational.
Several years back, while working at a small, Central Mass. newspaper, I was fortunate enough to be able to cover some home, Boston Celtics games. While the team, which was then in the midst of being run into the ground by Rick "the Ricktator" Pitino, never put a very good product on the floor, they certainly didn't lack in quality players including Chauncey Billups, Ron Mercer, Antoine Walker, Kenny Anderson and Paul Pierce.
None of them were any more impressive than Xaverian's own Dana Barros. I will never forget being far sweatier and much more out of breath than Barros after making the sprint from courtside through the tunnel to interview him following a game in which he played every minute.
Seeing his Xaverian game jersey framed alongside his autographed Celtic jersey on what has to be one of the most impressive Wall of Fames at any high school in any state in the entire country ranks right up there among the highlights of a long sportswriting career and provides as much reason for excitement for the impending basketball season as Matt Hasselback's, whose father Don was a childhood favorite New England Patriot, provides for covering the Hawks football season.
Westwood also got a first look at their 2010 edition with a scrimmage against Norwood, which they followed up with a cookout thrown by the Westwood Gridiron Club in the parking lot of the neighboring Senior Center. Hamburgers, Hot Dogs, and even some tossed salad provided some nourishment for a Wolverine team after battling a big, faster, stronger Mustang team for 80 plays.
It's events like, as well as the people and groups that put them on, that make high school sports such a special aspect of any child's upbringing and a perfect way to end the first full week of football practice.
Football wasn't the only sport to get underway this week and by day's end today, all teams at both schools in town will have had at least one practice as we enter the first full week of the high school fall sports season.
Coaches of all Westwood sports including varsity, sub-varsity and all youth teams are encouraged to report their game results to Westwood Patch. You can call me, sports editor Kevin O'Malley, at 339-222-8534, or send an email to email@example.com, which can be done from the "email the author" link at the top of this column.
Parents are also encouraged to show off their photography skills, and offspring, this season by contributing photos to any of our stories. It's as easy as sending me an email, or you can just click on the "add my photos" link that is present with every story and show us what you've got.
Information about upcoming events can also be submitted - or added to our calendar by anyone. So please, don't hesitate to use your voice and contribute your talents - after all, this is your hometown Patch.