Lions Up Against League's Best on Thanksgiving
Newton South will take on Lincoln-Sudbury tomorrow in Sudbury.
To gain a little respect you have to beat the best--and that's exactly what Newton South head football coach Ted Dalicandro is hoping for on Thanksgiving Day.
The Lions will travel to Lincoln-Sudbury on Thursday at 10:15 to take on the top team in the Dual County League.
The holiday rival is still in its adolescent stages--compared to some local rivalries--but Dalicandro believes he is lucky to play such a talented team in the last game of the season every year.
"L-S is one of the best teams in the league and in the state," said Dalicandro, whose Lions are 1-9 this season. "You want to end your year beating the best teams. That's the way we are looking at it."
Lincoln-Sudbury is on a four-game win streak, and although their point differential is only two points, they pose challenges for the Lions.
When asked what Lincoln-Sudbury does well, Dalicandro said, "Everything. They are well coached by a Hall of Famer, Tom Lopez. They are great across the board; in running the ball and throwing the ball. Plus, they are tough to move the ball against."
Coaching against a legend like Lopez is big motivation for Dalicandro.
"He's seen it all and done it all," Dalicandro said. "Sometimes when you are a young coach you are in awe of what he is able to accomplish. On the other hand, there is nothing better than to be able to compete and hopefully beat a guy of his talent."
To achieve that victory--which would be the first since 2004--Dalicandro wants his team to focus on converting third downs against the tough defensive front, which will allow the L-S run game to remain seated on the sideline.
Newton South can't play spoiler to a potential L-S playoff berth, as the already wrapped that up, but a win for the Lions would mean lot of respect and some good forward momentum going in to next season.
"You are playing the league champs. A win here, if they go out and play hard, can go a long way into helping this (team) develop into a better football program," Dalicandro said.
Want to know more of the nearly 40-year history of the rivalry between Newton South and Lincoln-Sudbury? Check out our feature story on the growing tradition.