Wednesday, November 30, 2011
The Rockets made history on Tuesday as they defeated the Whalers, 42-14.
Take a deep breath Needham High School varsity football fans, because the Rockets have officially won a playoff game and are headed to Gillette Stadium on Saturday to face Boston College High School in the MIAA Division I Super Bowl. “It feels great,” Needham head coach Dave Duffy said after his team’s victory against New Bedford on Tuesday. “We’ve never won a playoff game, [and] it’s always hung over our heads a little bit, but especially moving up to Division I. I knew we were going to be good this year. I’m glad the kids worked hard and got to accomplish something no other team has ever accomplished.” The Rockets should be proud, especially since they beat-up a quality New Bedford squad on Tuesday evening under the lights at Weymouth …
Tuesday, November 22, 2011
The neighbors and rivals will meet for their 124th Thanksgiving Day game on Thursday, Nov. 24, with a win sending Needham to the post-season.
It isn’t exactly Harvard-Yale or Williams-Amherst, but it is indeed one of the oldest high school football rivalries in the country, and every year it lives up to the hype. On Thanksgiving morning, Needham High School’s varsity football team will travel to Wellesley High School for their final regular season contest of the season. With a win, they’ll clinch their first playoff berth since 2009. “We’re working hard in practice. Everyone’s picking up the intensity level that much more. We’re just trying to prepare and work hard, so we can try and win this game,” said Mark Riley, a senior co-captain for Needham. Needham will enter Thursday’s contest with a one-game winning streak, while Wellesley has dropped their last two matchups against …
Friday, October 28, 2011
Mark Riley, senior co-captain of the Needham High School varsity football team, talks about the season thus far and his favorite football moments. The team will take the field tonight at home against Natick.
Senior co-captain Mark Riley has been a pivotal part of the defense for this year's Needham High School varsity football team and has been described by other coaches in the Bay State Conference as the best tight end in the state. But the humble Riley doesn’t let anything interfere with his game—he's just focused on having fun and working hard. Needham Patch stopped by the practice field recently to chat with Riley, who shared his thoughts about the season, recent wins and his favorite football moments in the Rockets uniform. After last week’s win against Walpole, you, as well as senior co-captains Pete Madsen and Mike Vespa brought the game ball to Drew Burnett. Talk about that particular experience. It was great to get the win for Drew. …
Saturday, October 22, 2011
Sophomore quarterback Ryan Charter and senior tight end connected for two TDs in Friday's win against Walpole.
Leading up to Friday’s contest against the Walpole Rebels, Needham Rocket fans had one question on their mind—who would replace senior captain and quarterback Drew Burnett under center? The answer: an untested sophomore by the name of Ryan Charter, who appeared completely unfazed against a Rebels defense and managed to record two touchdown strikes to senior tight end Mark Riley in a 31-22 victory. “It’s easy to play well with these kids, it’s a great team,” Charter said. “The whole week, I didn’t really know what was going on, I just tried to do my best in practice [and] I was looking forward to the game the whole week and everyone was asking if I was nervous and I was like, ‘no way, I’m excited,’ so I loved it, I loved it.” “The kid …
Thursday, October 20, 2011
Needham Rockets news, notes and games to watch.
It’s been an interesting past couple of days for the Needham High School Rockets varsity football team, who lost senior captain and quarterback Drew Burnett to an ankle injury, which he sustained last weekend against Milton. “He wanted to stay in, I wanted him to stay in, so it was my decision and it apparently was a bad decision [because] he got hurt,” head coach Dave Duffy said. “I feel bad for him, and his high school career’s over, but his college career will still go on. After he recovers [from his injury], he’s going to be perfectly fine." Burnett, who wasn’t at the team’s practice on Wednesday, left an enormous void for Duffy, who will likely be forced to use three backup quarterbacks, (senior Dan Pierce, junior Matt McGloin and …
Saturday, October 15, 2011
Because of inclement weather on Friday, the Rockets varsity football game against Milton was suspended until Saturday afternoon.
After a few strikes of lighting lit up the Needham nighttime sky on Friday, MIAA officials were forced to suspend the Rockets’ sixth varsity football game against the winless Milton Wildcats to Saturday afternoon at 1:00 p.m. Needham began the game with a bang, as senior quarterback Drew Burnett capped off a three-play drive with a 58-yard touchdown strike to senior tight end Mark Riley, who also caught a four yard score later in the same quarter. Burnett also connected with senior running back Ian Riley for a 40-yard score, while senior Dan Pierce registered the only rushing touchdown of the game on a 28-yard dash. As for Milton, their offense struggled to contain Needham’s front seven, which recorded three sacks and held the Wildcats …
Friday, October 14, 2011
Needham High School senior running back has recorded five rushing touchdowns in his past two games for the varsity football team.
Needham High School’s senior running back Ian Riley is a true gamer. He loves the sport of football and is committed to working hard as well as having fun—especially because it’s his final year sporting the blue and gold. Riley also has experienced a great deal of success this season, for which he credits his offensive line, senior quarterback Drew Burnett the rest of his teammates, who have helped him record five rushing touchdowns and 100 yards or more in the team’s past two games against Brookline and Weymouth. Needham Patch spoke with Riley recently about the season so far and why he truly loves playing football. Can you give us some insight on why the running game has been one of the biggest reasons your team has been so successful …
Tuesday, October 4, 2011
Here's our first edition of Rocket Fuel—recapping the past week in Needham sports and looking ahead to this week.
Needham Patch's Matt Noonan recaps the past week in Needham sports and looks ahead to the upcoming slate of games this week in the first edition of his new video series, "Rocket Fuel."
Sunday, October 2, 2011
The Rockets' running back tandem, Riley and Vespa, helped Needham's offense record six touchdowns against the Wildcats on Saturday, Oct. 1.
Before the 2011 high school football season began, Needham Rockets varsity football head coach Dave Duffy, as well as senior captains Drew Burnett and Mark Riley, expressed in a preseason interview that Weymouth would be their most challenging opponent this year. On Saturday, Duffy’s team aced their toughest test of the season, as the Rockets beat up the Weymouth Wildcats, 45-28 at Memorial Field. “It was a hard hitting game. Weymouth was hitting us hard, we were hitting Weymouth hard and it was truly a battle,” Duffy said. “We scored 45 points. That’s the second most since I’ve been here and we were just driving down the field [and] Weymouth had a great attack and [the] turnovers were even, the penalties were even and it just came down to…
Friday, September 23, 2011
Rockets quarterback sheds light on his football career, plans after Needham High School.
Needham Rockets quarterback Drew Burnett had a career game last Friday, Sept. 16 against the Mansfield Hornets, despite his team's loss, and the senior captain is optimistic about the remainder of the season. The Rockets are currently undefeated in the Bay State Carey Division and will look to earn their second conference win on Saturday when they travel to Curry College to face the Braintree Wamps. Needham Patch sat down recently to chat with the Needham High School quarterback—talking about football, the current season and his plans for life after graduation. You had a career game against Mansfield last Friday—tossed four touchdowns and completed 16-of-32 passes for 326 yards. Were you in awe of your performance? I think so. Definitely …