Thanksgiving Game Preview
By Steev Riccardo
There are big games, and then there are enormously huge games.The Thanksgiving morning match up between longtime rivals the Bartlett Indians and the Southbridge Pioneers is perhaps the biggest game these two teams have played in years. They appear to be evenly matched and both have a lot on the line.
After starting this season 1-2, things looked awfully bleak for the Indians, but after winning six of their next seven games, they suddenly find themselves on the brink of a conference title and a shot at a playoff birth.
For second year Bartlett head coach Dane Laboissonniere, Thursday morning’s game in Southbridge is his biggest test since taking over the program last year. Although this game has huge implications, the calm and cool coach has his priorities in order.
“Obviously we want to always win on Thanksgiving but we know that this game is going to be what gets us to our ultimate goal. Our goal this season was to win our division and winning on Thanksgiving is our goal every year. We are not thinking about playoffs, we are not thinking about Super Bowl, we are thinking about Southbridge.”
This match up is a beauty in every way. Both teams rely on their line play and their strong runners. Both teams have solid physical defenses.
The Indians have the “two-headed monster” of DJ Kirby-Thomas and Rocco DiStefano, both of which have had outstanding seasons. Kirby-Thomas is fifth in Central Mass in rushing with 1233 yards and 11 rushing touchdowns, while his partner in crime, DiStefano, is tenth in rushing with 1137 yards and an astonishing 14 rushing touchdowns.
The Pioneers have their own duo of studs in the backfield. Bart Chenevert is ninth in rushing in Central Mass with 1141 yards and 12 rushing scores, while his backfield mate Jamie Ortiz is also in the top twenty in Central Mass with 913 yards and 6 rushing touchdowns.
This game has the makings of a real donnybrook (Definition= “Free for All,” “Brawl’)
“We are preparing the same way as we do every other week. We are going with what got us here. Whatever they give us will dictate who gets the carries. If they take something away from us we will give them something else.” said Laboissonniere, who is not pulling any punches in regards to this game.
Everyone you talk to says the same thing about this game and they say the same thing every year. Throw the records out the window, it’s Thanksgiving morning, it’s Bartlett vs Southbridge; anything can happen and probably will.
- Monday, 21 November 2011
- Posted in Categories: : Sports