Revere coach Lou Cicatelli takes a traditionalist view on Thursday’s matchup at Winthrop.
“Winthrop’s Winthrop and Revere’s Revere,” says Cicatelli, who will be coaching his 14th Thanksgiving game. “Throw the records out. They want to beat us, and we want to beat them.”
Both teams have had equally tough seasons, and both come into game with 2-8 records. And both see better days ahead. Especially Cicatelli, who is the senior coach in terms of service in the area.
“I think our future is bright,” he said. “This is the youngest team we’ve had in a long time. We have a freshman quarterback and six sophomores starting.We have another freshman on defense, and I thought he had a decent season. So there’s light at the end of the tunnel.”
On the other hand, youth has to mature, and the Patriots have suffered with the growing pains too.
“This has been one of those seasons where whatever could possibly happen happened. We should have won some more games, but we shot ourselves in the foot. That’s going to happen when you have young kids on your team. They’re still learning.”
One game that haunts Cicatelli is a 12-6 overtime loss to Classical.
“That’s one I’d like to have had,” he said. “We made some silly mistakes. We had the ball on the 1-yard line and came away with no points.
“Our defense kept us in a lot of games, and that was one of them.”
Cicatelli feels he’s found a keeper in freshman quarterback Calvin Boudreau.
“He’s done a pretty good job,” he said. “There’s been a big learning curve for him. But he’s a competitor, and he’s going to be a great leader. The kids really rallied behind him. In a year or two, we’re really going to be OK.”
The Patriots’ biggest problem this fall — unlike their professional counterparts — was the difficulty they had scoring.
“We averaged only 12 points a game,” he said. “That’s not going to cut the mustard.”
It didn’t help Revere that it lost captain Ron Marcelino for nine games due to injury.
“Not having him really hurt,” he said. “He’s a great leader, on and off the field.”
He did have the services of Jim Kiousis and captain Ed Ballo for the duration, and they helped immeasurably, he said.
Playing in the second tier of the Northeastern Conference meant Revere had to open its season against Gloucester and Marblehead — no picnic regardless of how much experience a team has.
“If there’s any team we struggle with, it’s Gloucester,” Cicatelli said. “Right from the get-go, we were 0-2.”
He feels Winthrop will be a tough game.
“They’re starting to play better football just like us,” he said. “It could come down to a PAT, a mistake … grind, grind, grind. It should be a good game.”