NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — After a tough 2012 season for the McCann Tech Hornets that saw them finish with a 2-8 record just a year after making it all the way to the Division IV Super Bowl, the Hornets have already doubled last year's win total as they sit undefeated at 4-0.
"We're really enthusiastic about things," said McCann head coach Bob LeClair. "You know, we've got momentum right now. Going by last week's ball game, we had an outstanding game and that's just building up for this week and then beyond. The guys are really excited. They can see what's out there for them and so this has been highly motivating to them."
Last week, the Hornets went to Ware and outscored the home team 27-0 in the second half as they cruised to a 34-8 victory. The McCann Tech offense ran like a well oiled machine as they put up over 450 yards of total offense and five touchdowns. First-year starting quarterback Nick Lincoln completed eight of his 13 pass attempts for 165 yards and touchdown and added another score with his legs. The sophomore has stepped in this year and played exceptionally well for the Hornets.
"Nick's been doing a really good job. He has been doing everything we've asked of him right now in his first year at the starting quarterback spot, " added LeClair. "He's picking it up and that's really important. He's seeing more things is what's going on and that's the important thing. He's really self-correcting himself in order to improve and so I can't ask much more than that."
Another player in a new position for the Hornets this year is Nick Lincoln's brother, senior captain Billy Lincoln. Billy Lincoln moved from his offensive line position last year over to the tight end position and the team loves how he has performed.
"Three receptions, three touchdown passes speaks for itself. But what it has really done is solidify the offensive line for us over there on that side. We've had good guys over there in the past." LeClair said. "But nobody of his caliber to block over there. It's really opening up things for us. So we are enjoying that very very much."
Along with the stellar play of the Lincoln brothers, the Hornets are enjoying the play of junior Levi Lawson. In their Friday night matchup against Ware, Lawson rushed for 81 yards and a touchdown to go along with 83 receiving yards that included a 60-yard touchdown reception.
"He has really stepped up for us," LeClair said. "He does everything for us. With punt returns, kick returns, he's kicking extra points along with catching the ball and running the ball. He's done a great job defensively for us too. So he's been really valuable and offensively we've put in more things for him."
Coach LeClair added that his offensive line has really come around.
"A lot of them had to play last year as sophomores and three of my guys are new. We got Max Hartman at center, Adam Rodriguez is a guard, and Sterling Hewitt is a tackle and they have really gotten better week in and week out. They have been working at it every day and really improved in the games. I've been pleased with that because Adam LeClair and Gustavo 'Goose' Montoya were starters last year so they got a feel for it but the other three guys have come in for us and really stepped it up."
This week, McCann hosts Palmer on Saturday afternoon at 1 p.m.
The Panthers enter the game winless, but LeClair said the team won't play down to their competition.
"Ahhh no, no. We're going to avoid that," he said. "What hurt us last week was we had nine penalties and that really hurt us a lot. We had over 400 yards of offense but had to make up for mistakes that we made and we can't be doing that. We don't need to regain yards that we already got. We make some big plays and we got a hold, a block in the back, an ineligible man down field. Lots of things like this going on so we need to avoid those mistakes because you're just not going to beat teams when you're making mistakes."
"It's coming out and we want to execute to the best of our ability," LeClair said. "Let's try and play that perfect game Saturday is what we are trying to stress. No little mistakes. Just get out there and get after these guys."