The Week 6 schedule revives a couple of rivalries that have been one-sided in recent years. Namely, a Catholic Conference showdown between top-ranked Catholic Memorial (5-0, 2-0) and second-ranked St. John’s Prep (5-0, 0-0) that is also a rematch of last year’s D1 Super Bowl. The Eagles handled the Knights, 40-22, at Gillette after earning a 27-21 victory over CM last October. They’ve now won eight straight over CM, which last won at Prep in 2008.
In Billerica, the Indians also look to avenge a pair of losses to Tewksbury last season. The Redmen (3-1, 1-0) have won four straight against their MVC rivals since 2016, including a 35-6 victory in the D3 North tourney last fall en route to a sectional title. Billerica (2-2, 1-0) is coming off a key win over Dracut to tie Tewksbury atop the MVC Small standings, so this matchup has huge conference implications.
Finally, Franklin (3-1, 1-1) looks to shock the Hockomock world by topping Mansfield (3-1, 2-0) for the first time since 2009. The fourth-ranked Hornets are looking very tough with wins over BC High (31-10), Taunton (31-6), and King Philip (15-13) and a loss at nationally-ranked La Salle (Ohio). The Panthers have fallen short in nine straight tries against Mansfield, which stands in their way of earning a share of the Hockomock Kelley-Rex title.
Brockton at Xaverian: These proud programs have both taken their lumps with respective 1-3 records, but the history of this rivalry is rich and the competition should be fierce at the Hawks Bowl. Pick: Brockton.
Barnstable at Nauset: The surprising 4-0 Warriors are rolling under third-year coach Bruce Strunk. Now they’ll host a physical Barnstable team that is looking to bounce back after losses to Holliston and New Bedford. Pick: Barnstable.
Danvers at Swampscott: It’s a clash of styles between the ground-and-pound Falcons and Big Blue, who love to put the ball in the hands of All-Scholastic Graham Inzana and air it out. Pick: Swampscott.
Mansfield at Franklin: After edging King Philip, 15-13, in a key Hockomock Kelley-Rex showdown, the Hornets face another obstacle in their pursuit of a conference crown. Pick: Mansfield.
Mashpee at Cohasset: With Devaun Ford injured, Cohasset rallied to upset top-seeded Mashpee in the D7 South semifinals last year. The new-look Falcons will be out for revenge. Pick: Mashpee.
Tewksbury at Billerica: It may be tough for the Redmen to cover Billerica’s talented receiving corps if senior captain Shane Aylward is out with a shoulder injury. Pick: Billerica.
Andover at Methuen: Behind a solid defense and great quarterback play from Connor Bryant, Methuen is off to a 4-0 start, but the Warriors have narrowly escaped with just 19 points in each of their last two wins against Lowell and Haverhill. Pick: Methuen.
Belmont Hill at BB&N: These teams finished tied atop the ISL-7 last year with matching 7-1 records and are loaded once again. Belmont Hill is in a three-way tie atop the league with Milton Academy and Governor’s Academy, which handed BB&N its first loss this year. Pick: BB&N.
Revere at Lynn English: In their last season as a member of the NEC, the Patriots are off to a hot start. Taking down Lynn English on the road would provide quite a statement. Pick: Revere.
Catholic Memorial at St. John’s Prep: It’s a rematch of the D1 Super Bowl and a showdown between arguably the favorites to meet in the state final once again. Will Prep’s physical style prevail over the speedy Knights? Pick: St. John’s Prep.