NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

November 26, 2013

Groveland's Lovett takes center stage for St. John's Prep

Jean DePlacido
Staff writer

---- — Sean Lovett is playing out of position for St. John’s Prep, but the reliable senior has been consistently good all season.

Normally a tight end/defensive end, Lovett moved this season to center. On last year’s team he also was used at tackle, and was on the field for the whole game in the playoff win over Andover.

After James Fagan graduated, the Eagles needed a replacement. Lovett has done a stellar job while flying under the radar. He, however, has not gone unnoticed by his coaches and teammates.

“We moved him to stabilize the line. He has been the one constant on the offensive line all season,” said St. John’s coach Jim O’Leary, who like Lovett lives in Groveland. “He makes all the calls up front, and we haven’t had a lot of snap issues. He’s very bright, a great student, and we’ve looked to him to provide steady leadership.”

At the start of the season, Lovett was the only newcomer on a veteran offensive line, but injuries and suspensions forced the coaching staff to fill the spots with underclassmen. Through it all, Lovett has provided consistency.

“I did play center my sophomore year so it’s not entirely new for me,” said Lovett, who is 6-foot-4, 225 pounds. “It’s not an easy position to play because you have a lot of responsibilities. I’m the quarterback of the offensive line.

“Thanksgiving has so much tradition, and every year this is a big rivalry for us. As a senior, I want to go out there and come away with a victory. I want to leave Cronin (Stadium) for the last time as a winner, but I know we will have to be flawless in all aspects of the game to do it. Xaverian has a great team, but we have the weapons to battle them.”

Joe Lovett, Sean’s father, has been an assistant coach for 25 years at the Prep, where he also teaches and was a longtime assistant basketball coach. He handles the defensive ends and punting team, and in previous seasons was his son’s position coach.

“He’s been my coach in both football and basketball,” said the younger Lovett, who will return to his true position at defensive end next year at Bates College. “We get along great, and he always plays it straight with me. He tells me when I do something right and also the stuff I can improve on.”

The Eagles will face a tough opponent in the final game of their season. The Hawks (9-1) will take on Central Catholic in the Division 1 Super Bowl at Gillette Stadium on Dec. 7.

Football Family

Sean Lovett’s cousins, Matt, Mike and Mark Lovett, all played at Pentucket, with Matt later starting for four years at Merrimack College, where he was a captain in 2009.