The Everett High School football team couldn’t have found a tougher Opening Night test than the opponent it will face Friday night.
Defending Division 1 Super Bowl champion Xaverian High School, who defeated Everett last December for the state title at Gillette Stadium, will be at Everett Veterans Memorial Stadium for the 2015 season opener versus coach John DiBiaso’s Crimson Tide.
The Everett varsity bested Lynn Classical, 14-0, in a scrimmage Friday night. Quarterback Jordan McAfee threw a touchdown pass while sophomore Dexter Cumberlander had a 30-yard run in an impressive overall performance.
Defensive tackle Jonathon Collimon and linebacker R.J. Fialli led a solid effort by the Everett defense against Classical, who will be a playoff contender in the Northeastern Conference this season.
Both McAfee and Collimon have been receiving preseason attention locally and nationally. McAfee impressed at quarterback camps this summer and the 6-foot-4-inch junior is projected as one of the top signal callers in the state.
ESPN Boston ranked Collimon, a 6-foot-5-inch senior who has received correspondences from Division 1 college programs including Boston College and UCLA, as the the ninth-best high school prospect in Massachusetts.
Xaverian is a powerhouse once again. Coach Charlie Stevenson has two linemen (Nick Allsop and Elijah Pierre) heading to Brown, while Coby Tippett, son of former New England Patriots star Andre Tippett, is a two-way threat at wide receiver and cornerback.
The stadium should be packed as two of the most successful programs in Massachusetts meet in another edition of this intersectional rivalry.
Supt. of Schools Frederick Foresteire attended the Everett-Classical scrimmage and the leader of the school system says he was impressed by Everett’s execution. He is excited about the Xaverian-Everett showdown.
“I thought we played well (against Classical),” said Foresteire. “The defense wasn’t as crisp as it should have been on Classical’s first possession but it came around. We certainly have a big game Friday night.”
Foresteire was asked about Everett’s non-league schedule that is arguably the toughest in the state, beginning with the Hawks’ invasion Friday,
“We’re at that level and that’s the kind of competition we should be playing,” said Foresteire. “We’re playing all the top teams and that’s where we should be. I’m very excited about the new season. I think we owe Xaverian something and I just hope our boys play that way. The stadium will be packed. This is the game of the week.”