Article by: Steve Watson
Football season has come to a close and the Patriots have Ring #6! While football’s return might be about 7 months away, it’s never too early to look ahead to the 2019 Season.
A few TVL teams entered the off-season on the hunt for new non-conference opponents. Those teams were Holliston, Millis and Hopkinton. Holliston & Millis have finished their shopping while Hopkinton is still roaming up and down the aisles of the store.
The 2019 Season will feature one extra regular season week (8, up from 7), but teams can still only play 7 games in the regular season. Week 1 is September 6-7, Week 1A is September 13-14. September 20-21 marks Week 2 & then we march on with Week 3, etc. Because of this, all teams will have a bye week in one way, shape or form in 2019.
Holliston will actually have two bye weeks. They are scheduled to open the 2019 campaign against Barnstable on September 20, meaning they will have Weeks 1 & 1A off. The Panthers had two non-conference openings but only opted to fill one. Barnstable replaces Norton as Holliston’s lone non-conference opponent.
Millis also entered the off-season looking for two non-conference opponents and they succeeded in finding them. The Mohawks only played one non-conference game last year (against D7 Super Bowl Runner-Up St. Mary’s of Lynn) but will play two this year. They are slated at open at home on September 6 against Shawsheen Valley Tech, have a bye the week after then travel to Pope John XXIII (Everett) on September 20.
Hopkinton is still shopping around for a Week 2 opponent to replace Needham, who the Hillers lost to last season). They will open up the season once again against Wayland. That game will be September 13 on the road.
Some schools that could fill the Week 2 vacancy include: Pope John XXIII, Dedham, Falmouth, Weymouth, Nantucket, Cardinal Spellman, Wilmington and Martha’s Vineyard. Wayland also has a Week 2 opening. In theory, Hopkinton & Wayland could move their match-up to Week 2 if they are both able to find Week 1/Week 1A opponents.
Several of the schools with Week 2 openings are a solid haul from Hopkinton. Teams looks to avoid long trips if possible. That said, linking up with fellow TVL member Dedham for a non-conference series could be the most logical solution.
We’ll see how it all pans out. That’s an early look at the 2019 Season. But first, let’s get past winter and enjoy spring/summer!