High school football Gridbits: North-South remains one of oldest continuous series

·3 min read
South High hopes to increase its lead in the holiday series.
South High hopes to increase its lead in the holiday series.

• The North-South series is the oldest continuous series in Central Mass. — last year’s COVID season not counting — and one of the oldest in the country, although it has only recently been played on Thanksgiving. The first game was played on Oct. 21, 1914, and South won it, 12-0. The Colonels lead all time, 56-50-9, but North holds the edge in points scored at 1,483-1,454.

• Wachusett and Shrewsbury first played in 1929 when Wachusett was Holden High. Their Thanksgiving Day game will be the 78th, and Shrewsbury leads the series, 46-27-4. Shrewsbury leads on Thanksgiving, 7-4-0, including 4-3-0 since the holiday games resumed in 2013.

The Mountaineers are seeking their ninth victory of the season. They haven’t won that many in a year since going 11-2 in 2010. The game will be the 900th documented game in Shrewsbury history.

Wachusett coach Mike Dubzinski and Auburn’s Jeff Cormier both go into Thanksgiving with 183 career wins.

• St. John’s and Everett will meet for the second time ever, first time on Thanksgiving. Everett won the first game, 32-27, in 2019. Before starting the series with St. Peter’s in 1925, the Pioneers played Gardner, Milford and Leominster on Thanksgiving at various times. There may be more opponents.

Everett’s traditional Thanksgiving rival was Chelsea for decades, but that matchup became lopsided. The Crimson Tide also has played the former Cambridge High & Latin, Cambridge Rindge & Latin, Waltham, Melrose, Gloucester and most recently Masconomet on the holiday.

St. John’s (5-5) needs the victory to extends its Central Mass. record of 23 consecutive winning seasons. This does not include last spring’s shortened COVID year.

• Bartlett and Southbridge head into Thanksgiving both winless, something that has not happened since 1946 when Bartlett entered the day 0-7-0 and Southbridge was 0-6-1. Bartlett prevailed on the holiday, 19-0.

• No matter what the final score in its game against Clinton, Nashoba will wind up with a losing record for the first time since it was 5-7 in 2009. Clinton, however, can post its first winning record since 2010 (12-1-0) with a victory.

And congratulations to Gaels coach Justin Ball, who joined the Century Club when his team fell to Wahconah in the playoffs. Ball is 36-64 in 10 seasons between St. Peter-Marian and Clinton.

Zachary Oliveira and his Uxbridge team have chance to finish the season with a four-game winning streak.
Zachary Oliveira and his Uxbridge team have chance to finish the season with a four-game winning streak.

• Uxbridge has a chance to finish its season with four straight victories for the first time since 2005 when it went 8-3-0, including a 28-14 triumph over Northbridge; The Spartans’ 10-9 triumph over Tyngsboro on Nov. 12 was merely the second victory ever by that score for an Uxbridge team; the other was on Oct. 1, 1910, versus the Old Town Team, presumably not the Red Sox.

• David Prouty improved its all-time record versus Martha’s Vineyard to 4-1 with its 34-20 victory on Saturday. It was a long time between wins, though. The Panthers had last beaten the Vineyard on Sept. 23, 1972; the schools played annually from 1970-73.

Prouty finished the year at 6-5, their second winning season in the last 10 years. They have been either 6-5 or 5-6 in seven of the last 11 seasons.

More: Thanksgiving Sampler: Everything you need to know about this week's high school football games

More: Holiday replay: Tradition of area high school Thanksgiving football off 2-year bench

—Contact Bill Ballou at sports@telegram.com. Follow him on Twitter @BillBallouTG.

This article originally appeared on Telegram & Gazette: High School football; Worcester North; South; Thanksgiving football

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