The Revere High School football team is ready to debut this Friday against Medford on a brand new field, and Head Coach Lou Cicatelli said the first-class facilities have already helped attract new players to the team.
“It definitely brought new kids out for the team,” he said. “Last year, we had 65 on the team. This year, with freshmen, we’re going to be in the 80s. That’s pretty good for an inner-city school…I think the kids are excited to call this place home. They are glad not to be on the road all season like last year. To have a proper place to practice and play is something we haven’t had for a few years. Even when we had the field here, there were many times we couldn’t use it. Having a true home and being able to come down here and practice is making a difference even before the season has started.”
Cicatelli’s Patriots will square off against Medford at 7 p.m., but prior to that will be a celebration and ceremony with elected officials, Revere football alumni and honored guests – including National Anthem singer Rene Rancourt of the Boston Bruins.
The 1972 Revere state Super Bowl Championship team will reunite, there will be a nod to the late great Coach Silvio Cella and former Miami Dolphin Quarterback Jim DelGaizo will make an appearance.
More than 1,000 people are expected to attend and a reunion-type atmosphere is expected.
All of that brings more excitement than ever for the football team, and a insatiable desire to grab an opening win in front of the big crowd.
“We have to get a win,” he said. “Medford is good and a senior-led team, but I told the kid we have to win.”
Cicatelli said his captains are third-year staring Quarterback Dan Murphy, a senior, and senior defensive and offensive lineman Brandon Brito – who is out with an injury this week.
Newcomers Victor Rivera and Oscar Lopez, both juniors, are providing some speedy legs in the backfield to combine with veteran Running Back Steve Noel.
Others working very hard are Anthony DiStefano and Jake Noftle.
The team showed well in the off-season, reaching the Final Four of the 7-on-7 tournament – competing with more than 100 teams. However, the coach said the team needs to keep improving.
“Practice has been going well and the kids are working hard every day, but we’re nowhere near where we need to be,” he said. “The scrimmages have been okay. We’ve gotten better in each scrimmage. Defensively, we’re way ahead of the offense, but that’s always the deal.”
Cicatelli said the excitement amongst the team is at an all-time high as they approach Friday night – not only for the big game, but also for how the new facility has helped the city.
“It’s great for Revere; it’s great for Revere football,” he said.