2008 Power Players, Week 8
John Hennessy, Andover: The junior delivered his best all-around game as a starter in Andover’s 40-27 win over Haverhill. The QB rushed for 133 yards and three touchdowns and was 8 of 11 passing for 140 yards and two more scores. The five combined touchdowns were a career-high, besting the four against Billerica.
Jimmy Johnson, Andover: There aren’t too many athletes that play receiver and defensive line, but Johnson makes it work. On offense, he showed his speed by grabbing a short pass and taking it 55 yards for a touchdown just before the half. On defense, he recorded a sack, caused and recovered a fumble and made three tackles.
Jason Buco, Brooks: The 165-pound junior from Methuen completed both his passes, including a 20-yard touchdown, and returned an interception 30 yards for a score as Brooks pounded Thayer, 35-7. Bolstered by the versatile Buco's play, the Green and White are now 2-4. That's quite a turnaround for a team which had won only two games in the previous three seasons combined.
Jimmy Haddad, Central: The senior, who starts at offensive guard, got the rare chance to play a little defense and made good on the opportunity. He recorded 13 tackles in the Raiders' 21-13 win over Tewksbury.
Jeff McLaughlin, Georgetown: In just his second start of the season, the senior middle linebacker paced the Royals defense in a 38-8 win over Ipswich. McLaughlin made a team-best 11 tackles as Georgetown limited the Tigers to just 36 rushing yards.
Greater Lawrence Tech defense: Wadscar Gomez took care of the offense with four touchdowns, but he may have been overshadowed by a defensive line that ruled the trenches in a 35-8 win over West Roxbury. Miguel Baez, a 6-2, 250-pound junior, showed his athleticism by intercepting a pass. He and 6-1, 260-pound senior Juan Olivo were in the backfield all day. When they didn't make the plays, linebackers Anthony Ocasio and Angel Rivera were there to clean up with some wicked hits.
Ramon Heredia, Lawrence: The senior quarterback became the first 1,000-yard passer in the region this fall in Thursday night's big win over North Andover. Heredia was 14 of 21 through the air for 139 yards, raising his season total to 1,031 with four games to play.
Adam Bardwell, Londonderry: What didn’t Adam Bardwell do on Friday night against Nashua North? He rushed for 174 yards on 16 carries and three touchdowns and added a fourth when he picked up a dropped lateral and ran it for a score. He nearly had a pair of interception and applied heavy pressure blitzing from the outside.
Aaron Brunette, North Andover: The senior receiver helped the Knights hang tough with Lawrence, grabbing four big passes for 72 yards on the night.
Dino Rizzo and Darren Hartwell, North Reading: Both were asked to change positions, and didn’t miss a beat. Once the running back, Rizzo moved to quarterback and passed for 90 yards and two touchdowns and added 57 yards on the ground. Hartwell moved from receiver to running back and rushed for 67 yards while catching three passes for 90 yards in North Reading’s 27-0 win over Watertown.
Ronnie Rossi North Reading: With the injury to quarterback John Brooks, players had to play unfamiliar positions. But the offensive lineman was a calming presence, shoring up the left side of the line and allowing the run game to gain 203 yards.
Bill Helliwell, Pelham: When two of the four unbeaten teams in New Hampshire locked horns, somebody had to step up. That somebody was two-way lineman Helliwell, the brightest star in the Pythons' huge 17-3 win over St. Thomas Aquinas. Double-teams did little to slow the 6-2, 270-pounder, who also helped the Pythons control the clock with their running game.
Austin Perreault, Pentucket: Two weeks ago, he wasn’t a starter. But the junior was all over the field for the Sachems as they fell just short to Wilmington, 21-20. Perreault carried 17 times for a team-high 76 yards and a touchdown, and at linebacker made a team-best 11 tackles.
Matt Fiore, Pentucket: Simply saying he does it all doesn’t do him justice. Just on offense, the senior played tackle, tight end and fullback for the injury-depleted Sachems. The 2007 Eagle-Tribune All-Star also stood out at his usual defensive tackle spot, making eight tackles.
Dan Hussey, Phillips: The postgraduate from Waterville, Maine, was cool under fire in the key 14-7 win over formidable Deerfield. He engineered a late 71-yard drive to pull out the victory, capping it off with a 14-yard scoring strike to Sam Auffant. He scored the 5-1 Big Blue's other points on an 11-yard run.
Pinkerton offensive line: The crew of Thor Johnson, Matt Crow, Ali Bahremand, Ryan Raymond, Chris Trieb, Ben Proulx, Zach Tulley and Colton Desmarais made head coach Brian O'Reilly's running game work in a 10-0 win over Nashua South. Charged with pushing the ball straight ahead, the Astros' linemen and tight ends did the job to the tune of almost a 5-yard average on 57 attempts.
Chris George, Pinkerton: As impressive as his offensive numbers were (100 yards on 16 carries, one touchdown), George really shined on defense. Mostly playing off the edge, George helped neutralize a speedy Nashua South attack and rang up a team-high eight tackles.
Brandon Gonzalez and Tyler Lawrence, Sanborn: The two fueled an aggressive defense that nearly led the Indians to a big upset over Hanover. Ay just 5-7 and 155 pounds, Gonzalez was all over the field in the 20-14 loss with eight tackles, an interception and a quarterback pressure. Lawrence, a hard-hitting 190-pound senior linebacker, notched a pair of sacks and eight tackles.
Derek Furey, Timberlane: On a kickoff, the junior took a handoff on a reverse and ran it back 85 yards for the game-winning touchdown in the Owls’ 34-27 win over Winnacunnet. The area's leading rusher gained 179 yards on 27 carries, giving him 1.252 yards on the year.
Nate Allen, Whittier: The junior linebacker was all over the field as the Wildcats took charge in the Commonwealth Conference Large with a 24-7 win over Shawsheen. Allen had eight tackles, a sack and an interception.