With the Stoughton High football team's , Stoughton Patch will look at some key factors and look ahead to this Friday's contest at Taunton at 4 p.m.
1. Running game- Stoughton's offense was charged by running backs Frankie Morris, Aaron Mack, and Malachi Baugh. The trio accounted for three of the four Stoughton touchdowns and had some huge plays including Mack breaking a 30-yard run on his first carry of the season. Morris carried the heavy load and played tough, in your face football, where Mack and Baugh were the play makers picking up chunks of yards at a time.
2. Offensive line - Stoughton's offensive line led by captain Adam Leonard center drew a four offside penalties against the Holliston defense. Although usually overlooked, the offensive line had strategy in which to draw the Holliston defenders to jump the gun and give Stoughton the extra 5 yards. Along with Leonard, fellow linemen Joey Wilder, Pat Raeke, Tim Porter and Dominic Evangelista provided solid run blocking up front.
3. Defense - After allowing a Holliston touchdown on the first possession, Stoughton's defense settled in and set the tone for the entire game. Between forcing Holliston to punt and interceptions by Leonard and Baugh the defense allowed the Stoughton offense to stay on the field and put points up on the board.
4. Will Stoughton become more aggressive on offense? - Stoughton only attempted four passes against Holliston with two being completed, including a touchdown from senior quarterback Danny Eckler to senior captain Andrew Kelly. Although the running attack was very successful Stoughton may need to establish a more balanced offense when heading into the always tough competition of the Hockomock League.
5. Can Stoughton limit turnovers? One of the key factors in Stoughton just missing the postseason last fall was turnovers. If Stoughton can limit the turnovers and keep the offense on the field, like the Black Knights did at Holliston, they will be in a great position to make a postseason run.
6. Looking Ahead to Taunton - Stoughton (1-0) travels to Taunton (0-1), the newest member of the Hockomock league Friday at 4 p.m. Taunton was the only Hockomock team to lose in week 1, falling to New Bedford on the road. The Tigers (like Stoughton and OA they also wear black and orange) are coming off a 1-10 season in 2011 and are looking for improvement in 2012. Jamal Williams got Taunton on the board first with a 19-yard touchdown run in the opening quarter, but New Bedford rebounded and came away with a 34-20 win. Despite the loss, Gerald Cortijo did break a 70-plus yard touchdown run.
Can't make it to Friday's game at Taunton? You can follow all the action right on Stoughton Patch with our live blog.
Stoughton Patch editor Jeffrey Pickette contributed reporting.