Published in the September 10, 2015 edition
By ANDREW MOUNTER
NORTH READING — The 2015 edition of the North Reading football Hornets are looking to improve on their 4–7 record that the 2014 team racked up, a year after the a successful 7-4 record in the 2013 campaign.
The team will have experience as they bring back key players from last year including junior Matt McCarthy and seniors Nic O’Connell and David Smith, who accounted for big parts of the offense last year as part of the Hornet running game, chewing up large swaths of territory against opposing teams.
The North Reading Hornet offense will run out of the single–wing offensive formation that they’ve been using the last several years. The team scored 222 points last season but were shutout on three separate occasions – a deficiency the coaching staff will be out to remedy this year.
The men with the clipboards and the headsets leading the Green and Gold this year are: Head Coach Jeff Wall, returning for his 13th year, now the Cape Ann League’s third longest–tenured coach, and assistants Chuck Campobasso, Elias Reinoso, Eric Archambault, Ernie Arena, Jim Gallotto and Jim Brown.
Providing leadership on the field will be the team’s captains: O’Connell and Smith, (both seniors) and John Merullo, a junior.
The defense will run out of the 4–4 formation and performed well at times last year, including a shutout of the Pentucket Sachems on November 7. They have O’Connell, McCarthy, Caleb Wing, and Nicholas Copelas among other key pieces returning to the defense.
Some of the key opposition the Green and Gold will face include most of teams they faced last season like Hamilton–Wenham, Masconomet, Pentucket, and the always tough Newburyport, whom they lost to twice in closely contested battles a including 29-27 overtime thriller last November 14.
The Hornets will once again host the Thanksgiving classic against their traditional rivals the Lynnfield Pioneers and will try to average their 35-0 blowout last Turkey Day on a snow covered field in Lynnfield.
The season starts tomorrow night at 7 p.m. in Ipswich against the Tigers. It should be another exciting and hard–fought season.