2018 Northeast Showdown Spring Football Tournament (Standouts)
The 3rd annual Northeast Showdown Spring Ball tournament was played this year at Nashoba Technical High School in Westford, Massachusetts. The tournament took place over two days, with skills contests and positional competitions also included.
The weekend began with the skills competition. The competitive juices were flowing early, as Parker McQuarrie from St. Paul's School (NH) took home the victory in the Smoking Gun Quarterback challenge.
The weekend tournament packed a potent field of some of the elite standout players and most competitive under-the-radar talent in the area. Teams and athletes came from as far as Philadelphia, PA, Nantucket, MA, and Kents Hill, Maine.
The PA Playmakers, (Pictured Above) who were coached by Al Crosby of Newman-Goretti High School in Philadelphia, brought a plethora of teams, with Team Strong shining brightest over the weekend.
Tre Bouie of Neumann-Goretti, Malik Griffin of Roman Catholic and Khaleef Jones of Neumann-Goretti stood out for the PA Playmakers, who wound up earning the 2018 tournament championship, after a battle-tested weekend effort.
Team Process was led by coach Tim Bassett of Acton-Boxboro, and TP had standout players like Michael Oppong, Herman Acheampong, CJ Cerella, Devin Deleon and Brian Rodriguez.
The South Shore Stars were led by 8th-grade signal caller, Champ Long out of Connecticut. Long took charge of the offense and executed it with precision and poise. The South Shore Stars were coached by Nick Pileeki, Offensive Coordinator at Maynard High Schoo. Everyone raved and commented about Long's confidence and competitiveness. Long was able to distribute the ball to some excellent athletes, such as Nantucket speedster Devonte Usher and 3-time, defending state champion Mashpee athlete Cam Kergo, who were both playing at a high octane-level all the weekend. Lucas Roque and Devon Williams from Durfee were all over the field making stops and knockdowns on defense for SSS.
The New Hampshire North Gamebreaker’s were coached by Vinny Giambrocco of Tilton School (NH). Parker McQuarrie, QB of St Paul's School connected with the elusive Stone Compton of St. Thomas Aquinas and the physically imposing Timothy Adetuyole from Kents Hill (ME) on numerous occasions throughout the tournament. Adetuyole also excelled in the red zone and on defense.
The All 9th-grade squad was led by athlete Dante Atwood from Newton North, LB Tristan Benson of Holliston, and scat back and young prolific passer in the making Jonathan Bunnell from St. John’s Prep and the multifaceted Duke Doherty of Everett. The 9th Grade team showed no fear all weekend and even shocked and defeated Team MA ELITE. The squad of phenomenal freshman was coached by Burke HS Head coach Byron Beaman and Victor Benson.
TEAM MA ELITE was coached by Middlesex School assistant coach Will Croom. Croom was pleased with the team's performance over the weekend.
“We have a lot of young guys sprinkled in with our core of older guys, who had high school team commitments and college visits on day one," Croom said. "It was a good way to throw younger players into the fire and have some questions answered, as to who is ready to play."
Younger players like Evan Thompson of Newton North, Steven Bua of St.John Prep and Michael DiPlacido of Assabet Valley really came to play.
On day two our quarterbacks really turned the corner with Ryan Qualey from Woburn making some better decisions with the ball then on day one and fitting some tight windows. Luke McMenamin of Milton also came to play and had the hot hand on several drives. He just throws a gorgeous long ball.
Lawrence Academy's Brady Martin shows that competitive far from what I’ve seen ever since he was a 7th grader just an ultimate competitor and can really galvanize the offense with his confidence and feed off of it. Several strokes for throwing to Tariq Lucona of Cambridge R&L, Justin Barron of Lawrence Academy, John Parsons of Taft School (CT) and Victor Otero of Acton Boxborough.
"It took me three years to find a running back like former Peabody star Doug Santos (Assumption College), which believe me is no easy feat," Croom said.
Jacob Perez of Boston College High School and Darren Watson of North Andover are two special backs who have stepped up and stepped into that role for Tam MA Elite. On Day 2, Watson stole the show with dazzling jukes and catches, proving how much of a difference maker he can be.
"Even though we have not had a lot of time together this group of athletes really has me feeling optimistic about this upcoming weekend's tournament in Philadelphia," Croom added. "Our defense is fast and athletic. We are still working some kinks out but very confident with this group of athletes. Knowing we have guys like Paul Yiadom of Lawrence Academy, Colin Cunningham of Middlesex School, Kyle Ray-Canada of Newton North, Steven Bua of St Johns Prep, David Carreiro of Haverhill, Zukudo Igwenagu of Worcester Academy and Michael DiPlacido of Assabet Valley, is an exciting proposition."
Team MA Elite will be hitting the road this weekend, as they head down to Coatsville, PA for a tournament.
“Throughout the years our cornerstone value system for this program is to open up doors to make an impression and provide opportunities, not for just the kids in our program, but for all kids in the New England region," Croom concluded.
2nd Annual Dirty-30 Linemen Challenge
Aside from the 7-v-7 action, Day two brought some of the best interior linemen together for the 2nd annual Dirty-30 linemen challenge. Several of the linemen in attendance were some of the biggest names and highly sought after underclass linemen in New England.
Tyler Onley of Capital Prep (CT), Marcus Romboli of Malden Catholic/Deerfield Academy, Michael Ciaffoni of Lincoln Sudbury, Greg Crippen of Milton Academy, Lucas Folan of Catholic Memorial, Chris Walsh of Catholic Memorial, Chidi Nna of Framingham, DJ Jelin of Concord-Carlisle were some of the standout talents on the radar.
Coach Glenn Schembechler, who has been an NFL Scout for 16 years, Rivers Head Coach Tom Bourdeau and former Syracuse lineman Emerson Kilgore all worked with the linemen on the afternoon.
These athletes were measured and spent a great deal of time really learning and implementing high-level techniques taught at the top level. Once that was all said and done the competition began for this year‘s Top DAWG award.
Out of all the top recruits in attendance, the Dark horses were Nick Evans of Attleboro, who finished a close second to Brooks Jones from Wayland, for the distinction of TOP DAWG.
Jones is a dual-sport athlete for the Wayland Warriors. Jones dominated in pass rush drills and has a compact and explosive build, checking in at 6-foot-2 and 285 pounds. Jones earned this year’s TOP DAWG award and was presented with a ticket to FBU's TOP GUN Showcase in person by FBU Northeast director Tom McGuire, who made the trip up from New Jersey. This year’s FBU TOP GUN Showcase event will take place in South Carolina.
(l-r - Brooks Jones, Greg Crippen, Michael Ciaffoni and Lucas Dolan)
2018 Spring Ball All-Tournament Team
South Shore Stars
Cam Kergo WR/SS - Mashpee
Lucas Roque LB/RB - Durfee HS
Champ Long ATH/QB - 8th grader - Connecticut
Brady Martin QB - Lawrence Academy
Steven Bua LB - St John’s Prep
Tariq Lucona WR - Cambridge R&L
Darren Watson RB - North Andover
Justin Barron WR - Lawrence Academy
Parker McQuarrie QB - Saint Paul's School
Stone Compton RB/ATH - St. Thomas Aquinas
Timothy Adetuyole - Kents Hill (ME)
Devin DeLeon - Fitchburg
Michael Oppong - East Coast Prep
Brian Rodriguez - Leominster
ALL 9th GRADE
Dante Atwood - Newton North
Tristan Benson - Holliston
Jonathan Bunnell - St. John’s Prep
Tre Bouie WR-DB - Neumann-Goretti HS.
Malik Griffin RB - Roman Catholic HS
Khaleef Jones WR-DB - Neumann-Goretti HS.
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