Class of 2010
Last year the Walpole Rebels football team went 13-0 and won the division II emass championship. 37 seniors provided a star-studded core and helped create one of the best teams in Massachusetts.
Much has changed since then.
With the rise of new head coach Barry Greener, a brand new quarterback, the graduation of those 37 seniors, injuries and other setbacks; no one really knew how the 09’ Rebels would shape up. Placed at number 3 on the Boston Globe’s Top 20, some hope was held within their ranks. Returning a solid 6 starters on defense, as well as Division II player of the year Ryan Izzo at tailback, the Rebel program was still held in high regard.
This past Friday night though, the Rebels faced their first big test as a new team—Bay State Carey menace Framingham under the lights. But the Rebels rose to the challenge, defeating the Flyers on their field 20-6 in a rainy showdown. Ryan Izzo rushed for 3 touchdowns in the first, second and fourth quarters. Nursing a shoulder injury he still put up 163 yards on 28 carries.
The game began on the right foot for the Rebels as the opening drive culminated with a 12 yard touchdown run by Izzo. With new senior quarterback Pete Bowes running the offense behind a brand new offensive line, the successful drive showed immediate promise for the Rebels. Complimented by superb first quarter defensive play the Rebels were off and running. A second Izzo touchdown in the second quarter put the score at 14-0. But the Flyers were able to get on the board with a 75-yard drive that ended in a quarterback run from 10 yards out for a touchdown.
With both teams coming from halftime with renewed fire, a stalemate ensued leading to a scoreless third quarter. But the fourth quarter ended in favor of the Rebels who scored one more time on a 20 yard Izzo run. Coaches and players on the Rebel side credit the fourth quarter victory to weeks and weeks of conditioning put in by the Rebels in the offseason. “Our conditioning really helped when the game came down to the wire. We were able to wear them down and that was a huge help for us,” commented Pete Bowes.
With week one coming to a successful 20-6 close at Framingham, the Rebels can build upon some new confidence in there young, but tough team. Facing Milton next week the Rebels have plenty more opportunities to augment, or debase, their growing confidence and success.