The Winthrop High School football team, coming off a strong preseason, takes the field for real at Danvers Friday at 7 p.m. in the 2012 season opener.
The Vikings have looked impressive in scrimmages, notably in a tie (three touchdowns apiece) against Malden, the second-rated team in the Division 1A Greater Boston League behind powerful Everett.
Head coach Sean Driscoll was set to announce the captains today (Thursday) as the final piece of important business in the Vikings’ preseason camp.
“We’ve have had pretty good senior leadership during camp and we’re looking forward to getting after it for real,” said Driscoll. “I liked the way we competed against Malden in a game scrimmage, especially in the second half when we battled back and scored two touchdowns. That was a solid Malden football team we played.”
The Vikings had a combined practice with Ipswich Monday before turning their attention to the Danvers Falcons.
Sophomore Dylan Driscoll, son of the head coach, will be making his first start as the varsity quarterback versus the Falcons.
“Dylan had a nice camp for a young player,” said Sean Driscoll. “Ruben Powell will also get some reps at quarterback.”
Bo Diaz, Jordan Corbett-Frank, and Dave Gallo will have prominent roles in the offensive backfield. Jordan Adkins, Ruben Powell, and freshman Reese Turransky will also see action in the Vikings’ backfield.
The starting offensive line includes center Luke Hodgkins, right guard Erik Castro, right tackle Dakota Dunn, left tackle Dan Feeley, and left guard Thomas Lund, while Jake McKinnon and Dave Capone will handle the Viking tight end position. Anthony Spinazzola will also be a key member of the line.
Feeley, a top lineman in the conference in 2011, will be a leader on the Vikings’ defensive unit. “Dan will be a big-time asset to our team,” said Driscoll.
Powell and Capone are also emerging as standouts for the Vikings’ defense.
Driscoll has high hopes for the season.
“We want to get better each day and each game and get ready to make a run at the championship,” said Driscoll. “There are some good teams in our league and it’s going to be a challenge.”
Newburyport, who edged Winthrop is last year’s title game, is the favorite in the Cape Ann/NEC. Saugus, Triton, Pentucket, and Amesbury, will also vie with Winthrop for the league crown.
“The league’s going to be fun,” said Driscoll. “We’ll see how our players and coaches step up and compete in those last five games which are essentially playoff games.”
Winthrop will be on the road for the first three games (Danvers, Swampscott, and Marblehead) before hosting Beverly on Friday, Sept. 28.