The New England Intensity returned to the friendly confines of Medway High School’s Joseph P. Hanlon Field this past Saturday where they locked horns with the Rebels of Southern Maine. What was forecast to be a sunny, warm day turned cloudy, breezy and cool for a majority of the contest, but this humdrum weather did nothing to dim the onslaught that the home squad served up for their guests!
Eager to get back to work after losing to Montreal in the previous weeks’ game, New England jumped right on the Rebels, receiving the game’s opening kick and returning it for 18 yards to just over midfield. A combination of Rookie Heather Milan-Eagleson’s runs (she’d lead the team with 69 rushing yards) and QB Rebecca Lopez’ arm (passing for an efficient 96 yards on 6 completions—4 of which were touchdowns, one a first down) put the Blue inside the red zone early. LB/RB Nikia Speed gashed in for the first score of the game fewer than 4 minutes into the quarter. Speed would lead the team with 3 solo tackles and 10 tackle assists this afternoon as well!
Things would only get worse for Southern Maine . . .
Unable to move the ball on their opening possession, they lined up to punt but a bobbled snap served up 1st and 10 from the M26 for New England. Lisa Vincent (62 rushing yards on just 3 carries to go along with a solo tackle, 6 tackle assists and a pass defended) found the end zone on the ensuing play to put NE on top 13-0 halfway through the opening period.
The Rebels fumbled New England’s kickoff and LB Kate Miechkowski (5 tackle assists) recovered it at the M 41. A few plays later, Lopez connected 24 yards through the air to TE Brenna Leveille for the first of two TD catches she’d have during the game (she, too, had a busy day, amassing 46 yard receiving on 3 catches, a forced fumble, a fumble recovery, 2.5 sacks, a solo tackle and 3 tackle assists).
The first quarter would end with the score 20-0 in favor of the home team and the second quarter would prove to be even more difficult for the Rebels as another bad snap on an attempted punt gave NE the ball deep in Southern Maine territory. The Intensity settled for a FG attempt that Kicker Lola Kantak Drilled from 29 yards, pushing the score to 23-0.
Later on in that quarter, when the visitors successfully got a punt off, Donovan nearly returned it 43 yards for a TD; however, she stepped out of bounds at the 10 yard line and there the Intensity took over possession. She would have four punt returns and average nearly 25 yards apiece in this game!
Leveille’s 2nd TD catch came a few players later. Another 3-and-out for the visitors was followed by another bad snap that gave NE the ball in the red zone again . . . this time at the 15. Lopez hit Rookie WR/QB Christine Sampson for her first touchdown reception of her career and the score now stood at 36-0. Kantak split the uprights on the PAT to add another point to the total, AND also broke the Intensity’s all time career points by place kicking record! Her field goal several minutes earlier broke two separate individual records—most FG made in a season and in a career for New England, so congrats to Lola! The Intensity offense, as a whole, was fairly well balanced and very effective—passing for 116 yards and rushing for 161.
The Defense for NE was particularly stout, holding Maine to negative total yards [-51 to be precise]. Due, in no small part to big plays . . . DT Jennifer “Coco” Edwards (3 solo tackles, 5 tackle assists) would give Southern Maine no quarter. Late in the 2nd, she tackled for loss the Rebel ball carrier, forced and recovered a fumble and handed possession back to the Intensity offense that was humming on all 11 cylinders. One shot, one kill . . . Lopez launched a 33 yard TD bomb to WR/DB Donna Bruce just inside the 2 minute warning for the first half.
Up 45-0 at halftime, the 3rd and 4th quarters were largely elementary. DB/WR Gumby Nesbitt intercepted her 3rd pass of the season and returned it 20 yards for a touchdown in the 3rd. Milan-Eagleson would steamroll her way to touchdown late in the 4th and WR/K Alie Powers’ PAT would be the game’s final score, 58-0.
Other notables for NE were: DE/TE Erin Diette, who had 2 solo tackles, 4 tackle assists, a forced fumble
and a fumble recovery. LB Charlene Casey with 7 tackle assists. And C/LB Michelle Breden (seeing her first substantial action at LB all season) with a solo tackle [for loss] and 3 tackle assists.
The win gave NE a final regular season mark of 6-2, good for their 5th consecutive trip to the playoffs! They will host the Philadelphia Firebirds, a team they have never before played, at Hanlon Field on Saturday, June 30th. Kickoff is 4pm and the Intensity invites football fans everywhere to come out and cheer them on!
The New England Intensity traveled to Montreal this past weekend to take on the undefeated, division-leading Montreal Blitz in an evening tilt on a pleasant late spring night.
Things got off to rough start for the visitors, surrendering a TD on the opening kickoff as the Blitz faked a reverse and went 75 yards to paydirt. Montreal scored on their next possession—courtesy of a few miscues by the Intensity--and would enjoy a 14-0 lead after the first quarter.
Bad field position plagued NE this entire game (their average starting position was their own 29, while Montreal started, on average, on the Intensity 32). In fact, the Intensity started on the Blitz side of the field only once all game, while Montreal started all of their possessions except one on the New England side of midfield. The Blitz took full advantage of this, scoring 14 more points in the 2nd quarter.
Montreal’s return game was a problem for the Intensity all night, too, and was a major factor contributing to the field position woes previously-mentioned. The Blitz averaged 40 yards per kickoff return and 20 yards per punt return.
New England showed signs of life in the 3rd quarter as rookie QB Christine Sampson (12 for 29 for 115 yds, 6 first down, 3 INT), led the Blue on a scoring drive capped off by a 5 yard TD run by Sampson.
She spread the ball around well during the game, linking up with Tricia Donovan for 3 completions (including a 42 yarder), Brenna Leveille for 3 completions (2 for first downs), two to Kimberly Boroyan (both first downs), two to Erica Adams (one for a first down) and one to Gumby Nesbitt.
While the passing game was decent for New England, their running game was not . . . the normally-potent ground assault gained exactly zero total yards on 15 carries.
The Defense for New England held up well in the 2nd half, not giving up any points in the 3rd and only one TD in the 4th (an important side note, Montreal did NOT substitute for any of their starters). The D only gave up 40 total rushing yards to Montreal (on 17 attempts—a scant 2.4 yards per carry) and 143 yards through on 13 for 26 passing; however, the home team was able to make several key big plays through the air—including 6 first downs and 2 touchdowns.
Nikia Speed had a stand-out game for the Blue’s defense, tallying a thunderous tackle, 7 tackle assists and a sack. Lisa Close, playing a great game even for her high standards and expectations, led the team with 8 tackle assists and notched half a sack as well. Lisa Vincent had 4 solo tackles and 4 assisted tackles. Donna Bruce logged 2 solo tackles, 5 tackle assists and 2 passes defended. Kate Miechkowski had 2 solo tackles and 2 tackle assists to go along with a pass defended. Mocha Torres had 3 very aggressive tackles, two on special teams. Charlene Casey had 2 solo tackles and 3 tackle assists. Bri Giarrusso and Coco Edwards had 3 tackle assists each.
Alie Powers, in her first game doing kickoffs, had a respectable 37.5 yard average and Tricia Donovan was busy, returning 5 kickoffs.
So, despite a handful of noteworthy performances, the team came up well short in this contest and must now identify and fix the various problems that surfaced north of the border. There is not a lot of time to do so as the final regular season tilt is 6/16/12 back at home (for the first time in over a month) with the Intensity playing host to the Southern Maine Rebels.
By: Tom Nappi
The Boston Celtics in game 3 was one of the most amazing TEAM performances I have seen from them since they clobbered the Heat in the regular season. Notice how I emphasized TEAM Performance there.
Game 3 in Miami was truly won by the team as a whole besides everyone on their bench besides Mickael Pietrus. Celtics won game 3 94-90 on a night when they were in Miami, the refs were against them and Lebron and D-Wade combined for 57 points.
K.G. was an absolute beast dropping 26 points with 11 rebounds and overpowered anything that got in his way. Ray Allen, Paul Pierce and Brandon Bass all scored in the double digits combing for 42 points, with Pierce hitting 19 of them. Rondo only finished the game with 7 points but was truly a team player on Tuesday night leading the team with 13 assists. The most underrated star, yet extremely important in this game was Mickael Pietrus who hit for 13 points off the bench.
This may have been the best team performance I have ever seen from this Celtics team all year and if they play like this throughout the rest of the playoffs, with the way Oklahoma City and San Antonio are beating up on each other, the Celtics have a legit shot to take home another championship in the final run of the Big 3 of 2k for the Green Teamers!
The Celtics are healthy and playing better than they should beware they are coming for you and not going away!
P.S. AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH (That's the K.G. Scream Go Celtics!)
Also is it too late to take back when I said they would not even make the playoffs at the beginning of the season and if they do it would be a 7 or 8 seed and they would not go anywhere? Keep proving me wrong Celtics, I am loving this, you are one of the very few NBA teams I could actually root for in that awful, terrible league filled with corruption and cry baby, over-pampered athletes. Proud to say my Celtics are different than most NBA teams, they play hard and don't complain!
By: Tom Nappi
Sunday, June 3rd, 2012 marked perhaps the end of Daniel Bard's Major League pitching career as he went 1.2 innings giving up 5 earned runs and walked 6. This guy straight out fell apart and was then sent down to Pawtucket 2 days later by the Red Sox. First of all, moving him down to Pawtucket was an awful move, at least give him another shot in the bullpen, Bard was solid as a late inning reliever for about 3 years now and as I have continuously said THIS GUY IS NOT A STARTER, HE IS A CLOSER or LATE INNING RELIEVER.
I am now afraid that the Rick Ankiel affect may happen to Bard in which he loses all confidence and can never find the plate again, and he will be another 98 mph fastball hurler to work his way out of the big show because I am not sure if he qualifies as an outfielder. This demotion was way to harsh and I did not expect this to happen so fast, I expected at least a move down to the bullpen considering he has been decent on the mound before this past Sunday.
We discovered in Bard's starts that he is not a strike thrower and the problem is hitters have figured that out. Only 43% of Bard's pitches are making it over the strike zone and only 39% of his pitches have been swung for, these stats put him in the bottom 3 starters in the majors. This was never discovered when he was in relief because hitters did not see him enough and you can utilize your fastball more when your in the game for 1 or 2 innings compared to trying to go 5 or 6.
In the past 10 games for Bard
Innings Pitched - 6.2, 0.2 (in relief), 7.0, 5.1, 7.0, 6.0, 5.0, 5.1, 5.1, 1.2,
Earned Runs - 1,0,2,4,5,1,5,2,2,5
Walks - 7,1,1,2,4,4,5,4,2,6
If you look at the overall stats they are inconsistent but decent especially in the American League, but you can see the longest he can last is 5 innings and he typically in 5 innings will give up 4-5 runs, which means he is a 1-2 inning relief pitcher not a starter, and I hope they don't have him start in Pawtucket because a few shaky starts will lead to a complete loss of confidence and perhaps mark the end of Bard's pitching career.
Fail by whoever made this guy a starter and Bobby Valentine is exempt from this fail because I know it wasn't him!
By: Tom Nappi
Terrell Owens has switched agents as he fired the well known Drew Rosenhaus who is arguably the number 1 agent in the NFL and brought in Dallas based Jordan Way.
Sorry T.O. I don't think the problem was your agent, the problem is you. You know how I know?.....It's because you are arguably one of the greatest physically shaped players I have ever seen and the Chicago Rush of the indoor football league does not even want you anymore because you are an absolute mess.
One thing I will say however is why doesn't an awful team like the Cleveland Browns or St. Louis Rams make an offer to T.O., how could T.O, possibly make a team like the Browns any worse, he may be a head case but it will arguably be the only player you have that will single handedly put butts in the seats and produce some kind of ticket sales for an awful team in the NFL. Also I could not imagine T.O. would not take any deal he can get no matter who it's from, if he is willing to sign with the Chicago Rush, he is willing to sign with the Cleveland Browns. This guy is desperate and he will take any gig he can get, but the Browns are stupid so don't count on this happening.
By: Tom Nappi
NFL Refs may go on strike, so the NFL has started employing replacement refs. NFL's latest proposal gives refs a minimum of $78,000 for rookies and a maximum of $139,000 for 10 year veteran refs for the year. This proposal was recently turned down by whatever greedy union represents refs. Now this may not be a lot of money compared to players but isn't this pretty fair since the refs only officiate 16-22 games max including preseason, season and post. Obviously this position is not going to pay like a player because you're not one but I will gladly take $75,000 at a bare minimum to officiate in the NFL. Considering the fact that the season is 6 months long and NFL refs work 4-5 days a week max, INCLUDING TRAVEL (and this is probably over estimating), the proposed deal sounds like a sweet deal to me. In fact I would argue that this is more than fair, considering that refs have the freedom to work additional jobs in the off season or even during the season. Even if they did not want to work for the off season, the refs are earning enough to continuously support their families and enjoy their lives.
One of the problems people have in general is they don't appreciate what they have and there's always a need for more! I can tell you from my own personal work experience that I work more hours and more days than NFL refs and my salary certainly does not show it. So NFL Refs union, shut up, take the deal and get to stand on the field with NFL players and call a football game and collect a salary in 6 months that most people don't even make in a year.
Also NFL if you need someone to ref your games, I will gladly do it for $50,000 a season and you know what, I will even call the games fairly even if I am calling a Patriots game.
P.S. If I was Roger Goodell I would fire all the refs I have now and higher new ones that appreciate this amazing opportunity!
By: Tom Nappi
Tim Thomas is seriously considering not playing next season which could leave the Bruins with 5.1 million dollars of cap space they can't use. Perhaps a trade is in the near future for the Bruins regarding Tim Thomas.
Tim Thomas is being very selfish as the Bruins were the only team to give him a legit shot and at the time overpaid him on his last contract extension and YES IT WORKED OUT as Tim played a key role in bringing home a Stanley Cup but the Bruins have treated Tim Thomas like gold and he has the nerve to cost them 5.1 mil in cap space because he is too much of a baby, to fight for his job. Tim Thomas has always been a "ME" kind of guy and this is just another example of Tim Thomas doing what Tim Thomas wants with no if's, and's or butts.
I have come up with a list of reasons why Tim Thomas may sit out next season:
1) Maybe he actually wants to be with his family like he claims, which if anyone is sick in his family, I take everything negative back I just said about him and commend him for being there for his loved ones and I will delete this article and post another one about how awesome and caring he is, but if it's just to be at home all the time that is pretty selfish unless there's circumstances which absolutely requires him to be home most of the time, then again I take back the negative stuff I said, but I doubt that is the case it's most likely just Tim doing what Tim wants with no regards for his team.
Play out the last year or so left on your contract, you owe it to your team after they gave you a chance and a nice pay day and who the hell would leave 5.1 million on the table, not even Josh Beckett would do that, he would at least fake an injury and play golf for a few games then come back and collect his paycheck!
2) The number 2 reason he may sit out is to make sure he does not get traded to some awful team like Columbus with the rise of Tukkarask, still this is selfish, if you weren't all about you the Bruins would probably let you retire in Bean-Town.
3) He want's a long term contract and this is his way of holding out until that happens, still this equals selfish without the Bruins you may not have ever been anything in the NHL, they made you!
4) He actually wants to be traded and the Bruins won't do it unless he does something drastic, in this case he should stay with the Bruins, shut up, take his 5.1 million and do what he can to make Tukka better and win the games he can because all he will do by not playing for a year is decrease his trade value!
5) A reason I did not really consider initially but do now is POLITICS. Let's not forget he moved his family to Colorado mid season in 2012 and Tim Thomas's allegedly real face book account which is supposedly controlled by him just made a post that pretty much says he is sitting out because of his fear of the future economy. If you click the link and read the article, it talks about an economy collapse, so if Tim sits out a year because of fear of the economy that is some radical stuff. Although I am not a fan of most of the current politicians in the White House, it does not mean I am going to sit out from my job and cost myself money! wait..... Tim, you fear the future of the economy but you are leaving 5.1 million dollars on the table.....ummmm yeah STUPID! Let's shut down MA Sports Web and lose all of our sponsor revenue because the economy might suck even more a few years down the road so I should stop working and earning money.....IDIOTIC if this is the case.
Tim Thomas on Facebook:
See why hockey's just not that important right now?
I have no idea which scenario I posted is correct but one of them probably is, so as much as I respect Tim Thomas for exercising his 1st amendment rights, he needs to stop being idiotic and selfish, shut up and play with his teammates who have his back and most importantly use the last few years you have left to bring the cup back to Boston and repay one of the very few organizations that gave you a shot at success!
P.S. Bruins signings
Daniel Paille 3 year 3.9 million dollar deal.
Chris Bourque - 2 way 2 year contract, son of Ray Bourque. Pay variates depending on if he makes providence club or Boston
Love these signings!
Intensity Continues to Roll, Beats Southern Maine 31-0
The New England Intensity kept their win-streak in tact, downing the Southern Maine Rebels 31-0 in Portland during a monsoon (low 50s, driving down-pouring rain).
The horrendous weather actually moved the officiating crew to call the game late in the 3rd quarter (the ponding water on the turf field was, in their opinion, creating unsafe playing conditions for both teams). As the score was already 31-0 at halftime, both squads agreed to have a running clock in the 2nd half.
With the result of the coin flip having the Intensity start the game going into the wind, their first few possessions were unimpressive, to say the least. They were able to right the ship, courtesy of a 15 yard Lisa Vincent run, followed soon thereafter by a 17 yard pass from rookie QB Christine Sampson—making her first start—to Erica Adams. The Adams Show continued, with an 11 yard run and a 35 yard TD scamper (the first of the season for her). This score came with less than 3 minutes left in the first.
On the next offensive series, Vincent picked up a low snap and turned on the jets up the right side for a 39 yard TD run, pushing the score to 13-0. Both she and Adams had over 40 yards rushing on 5 total carries between them.
Sampson threw the first TD of her career, connecting with Brenna Leveille midway through the 2nd quarter for a 17 yard strike. She tossed another, an 18-yarder, to Tricia Donovan shortly before halftime. Sampson ended the day going 6 for 16 for 92 yards with 2 TDs, 2 first downs and only one pick.
Sandwiched in between the air assault touchdowns was rookie phenom Heather Eagleson slashing 9 tough yards for her 3rd TD in as many games. She’d finish the game with over 5 yards per carry. In all, the Blue gained nearly 150 yards on the ground in this contest (only 17 carries—over 8 yards per rush).
The Intensity D pitched another shutout, the 3rd of the season so far, holding the power running attack of the Rebels to 0 total yards on offense on 25 carries (not even accounting for penalties). They did not attempt any passes.
The Intensity linebackers were active as ever . . . Vincent led the way with 8 tackle assists and a forced fumble and Charlene Casey had 7 assists of her own.
Kate Miechkowski had a solo tackle, 6 assists, a fumble recovered and a forced fumble. Adams had a solo tackle, 5 assists and a fumble recovery.
The D line played well, too. Lisa Close had 7 tackle assists and forced a fumble. Coco Edwards had 5 assists while Aimee Gauvin had three. Bri Giarrusso led the team with 2 solo tackles and chipped in 3 assists. Defensive Backs Donna Bruce and Andrea Covelli had a solo tackle and 3 assists, Covelli with a forced fumble, too.
In increasingly-impressive fashion, Mocha Torres continues to rack up Special Teams tackles, notching a solo and 2 assists on specials in this game. She is presently tied with Bruce for the team lead in this category.
Now sitting at 5-1, the Intensity prepares to square off with long-time rival and perennial powerhouse Montreal Blitz, who is presently undefeated (6-0). In fact, the only team to score on Montreal this season is New England (Montreal won the season-opener 20-11).
In The Division 2 South First Round of the Post Season Dedham took down Holliston 2-1.
In Division 3 girls Central Play Blackstone Valley Tech took down Hopedale 6-2 and Uxbridge pounded Monty Tech 16-0.
Local Softball action today at 3pm Wachusett is at Milford in the Division 1 Central Quarterfinals.
Boys Tennis Division 1 Central action Tantasqua took down Milford 3-2, In Division 2 boys South Scituate took down Holliston 5-0 and Whitinsville Christian shut out Hopedale 5-0.
Girls Tennis Central first round action Milford shut out Tantasqua 5-0.
In The Boys Volleyball Central Semifinal Milford shut out Xaverian winning all 3 matches.
Local Lacrosse action today as in Boys action Medfield takes on Franklin at 2pm, BVT takes on Tyngsboro at 3pm, In Girls Lacrosse Franklin battles Natick at 4pm and Ashland takes on Hopkinton at 4pm as the Spring season post season continues.