The biggest surprises through the first three weeks of the high school season are Newburyport lineman Dillon Guthro’s dominance, Pentucket’s passing attack on offense, and Triton’s ability to generate turnovers on defense.
Of the three suprises, I put Guthro at the top of the list.
The 6-foot-3, 220-pound defensive lineman has flashed athleticism that is rarely seen in the Cape Ann League. In last week’s win over Ipswich, Guthro’s size and agility made it an unfair fight at the line of scrimmage. He had 15 tackles, a sack for a safety, a forced fumble, and a blocked punt. When he was on the field, bad things happened for Ipswich.
Expect CAL coaches to get copies of that game film, and draw up offensive game plans that start with stopping Guthro. The three-sport Newburyport standout has been making his mark at the varsity level in football, basketball and lacrosse since his sophomore year, and his improvement has been rapid. This year, if he dominates on the basketball court and lacrosse fields like he has on the football field, the Clippers could be competing for CAL titles in multiple sports. If you have a minute (actually 59 seconds), you can see Guthro’s athleticism on display as he dunks a basketball over and over again in this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LzbnEdUEU9Y/.
On to the picks.
North Reading at Newburyport
North Reading is off to a strong start, outscoring its two opponents — Ipswich and Hamilton-Wenham — 49-7. The Hornets went 8-2 last season with the season coming to end when they lost to Lynnfield 14-7 on Thanksgiving with a playoff berth on the line. The Hornets graduated Carl Lipani, who rushed for 2,178 yards and 31 touchdowns. C.J. McCarthy is the new workhorse with 54 carries for 322 yards and five touchdowns in two games.