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Athol needs to get ‘back to the basics’

  • Trevor Waldron, right, of Easthampton, tackles Keegan Lutz, of Athol, Friday at White Brook Middle School in Easthampton. STAFF PHOTO/JERREY ROBERTS

  • Mason Barrieau, left, of Athol, evades Danny Dabek, of Easthampton, to run for a gain, Friday, Sept. 28, 2018 at White Brook Middle School in Easthampton. STAFF PHOTO/JERREY ROBERTS

  • Mason Barrieau, of Athol, punts against Easthampton, Friday, Sept. 28, 2018 at White Brook Middle School in Easthampton. STAFF PHOTO/JERREY ROBERTS

  • Keegan Lutz, right, of Athol, breaks a tackle attempt by Nathan Hogan, of Easthampton, and runs for a gain, Friday, at White Brook Middle School in Easthampton. STAFF PHOTO/JERREY ROBERTS

  • Athol quarterback Caleb Cox, center, scrambles while looking for a receiver during a game against Easthampton, Friday, Sept. 28, 2018 at White Brook Middle School in Easthampton. Teammate Logan Wing stands over Jacob Ross of Easthampton. STAFF PHOTO/JERREY ROBERTS

  • Mason Barrieau, left, of Athol, blocks a pass intended for Ben Landry, of Easthampton, Friday, Sept. 28, 2018 at White Brook Middle School in Easthampton. STAFF PHOTO/JERREY ROBERTS

  • Mason Barrieau, left, of Athol, evades Danny Dabek, of Easthampton, to run for a gain, Friday at White Brook Middle School in Easthampton. STAFF PHOTO/JERREY ROBERTS



Staff Writer
Friday, October 05, 2018

After a disappointing showing last week against Easthampton, the Athol football team will look to have a better performance against Mohawk Trail Regional on Friday.

“If we get back to the basics we will have a pretty good night,” Athol coach Bill LaRose said. “But if we decide not show up like we did last week ... we can’t have that.”

The Warriors (1-2, 1-1 Tri County) beat Pathfinder in Week 2. Mohawk looks to draw the defense near the line of scrimmage in hopes of connecting on the occasional deep ball.

While they play a lot of tight formations, the Warriors also spread things out.

“They are kind of Jekyll and Hyde offense,” LaRose said. “If you get too used to one, they attack you with another.”

Playing the Warriors’ style of offense might play to the strength of the Athol (1-3, 1-2 Intercounty North) defense, which is stopping the run.

Middle linebacker Dylan Castine and defensive tackle Manny O’Lari should be freed up to make plays for the Red Raiders.

That’s if Athol is playing well. The week of practice hasn’t been great leading into Friday.

“Truth be told it wasn’t one of our better weeks,” LaRose said. “I hope it doesn’t reflect in our play. We need to tighten things up.”

Running back Evan Shippee leads the Mohawk offense. Shippee ran for 189 yards on 12 carries against Pathfinder. Quarterback Shawn Davenport has made his share of plays as well for the Warriors.

Mohawk has limited numbers on its roster. It started the season with 14 players.

Running backs Mason Barrieau and Keegan Lutz should soften up Mohawk’s defense, which could lead to some downfield throwing from Caleb Cox.

“We have to play hard-nosed Athol football,” LaRose said.

The Red Raiders are dealing with a number of nagging injuries, but there should not be any integral players missing on Friday.

“We’ve had some bad luck the last 10 days,” LaRose said.


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