Rebel Football Prepares for Playoff Push

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Senior quarterback Troy Salvatore runs the ball.

Russell Ollis

Senior quarterback Troy Salvatore runs the ball.

With the departure of a senior class that only lost 3 games in 3 years, it would seem that the 2010 Rebel Football team would have their work cut out for them.  But our football team embraced this challenge and it has paid off.  Three weeks into the season and the Rebels are 3-0.  Not only are the Rebels 3-0, but they have dominated in every game so far, outscoring their opponents 90-14.  Second year coach Barry Greener has shown to the Bay State League that he knows how to win in a variety of ways.

The Rebels offense is centered around senior quarterback Troy Salvatore.  Last year senior Peter Bowes stepped into the quarterback position and took control, and it seems that this is a reoccurring trend for Walpole as Salvatore – who hasn’t played quarterback since his freshman year – has stepped into the position and shined.  Salvatore’s passes aren’t the only trick he has up his sleeve; he is a running threat as well – making him a nightmare for opposing defenses.  Another senior who has filled his role has been running back Kenny Woods.  The question every Rebel has heard this off-season has been ‘how can you replace Ryan Izzo?’  Woods has answered this question with ease – in the first game of the year Woods had 105 yards on 15 carries with a touchdown.  Woods has had similar, if not better, stats in his other two games.  In addition to the backfield, the Rebels have welcomed some new offensive linemen to the starting lineup.  Juniors Charlie Love and Dan King have both made an impact in the line, overpowering opponents with their size and strength.  These two junior linemen bring versatility to the offensive line.  In the first three games Love, King, and senior Captain Rob Prindall have switched positions and excelled at all of them.  Prindall has gone from left tackle to left guard, Love from center to guard and back to center, while King has played center, guard, and tackle.  Although the Rebels have a powerful offense, their true strength is in the defense.

The Walpole defense is anchored by senior Captain linebacker Dave Conroy.  Conroy has started since his sophomore year and has continued to impress everyone with his skills.  Joining Conroy at inside linebacker is sophomore Cam Hanley.  Although Hanley is only a sophomore he has fit seamlessly into the stingy Rebel’s D.  Another player who has displayed his skills on the defensive side of the ball is junior defensive lineman Dan Woods.  At defensive end, junior Sonny Luciano has split time with Prindall.  This combination has proven to be successful.  Returning to the Rebels defense are juniors Dave Thibault and Craig Hanley.  While they started last year and put up big numbers, this duo will look to repeat the successes of last season.  Senior safety Chris Norberg is someone who will look to continue his role as the anchor of the secondary.

With three games already under their belt, the Rebels will have to continue to make plays and win if they look to capture a Bay State League title and a playoff berth.  If they keep on the same track that they are on it seems that the Rebels will make a playoff push this postseason.