Coach: Nick Gregorio
Year on the Job: 3rd
Staff: Rob Ambrosino, Cliff Orwick, Justin Hartman, Steve Fortugno, Ken Quinones and Vince DelleFave
Home Field: Turf
2015 Record: 3-7
2016 Nemesis: Hackettstown
Freakishly Talented: Dover is no stranger to having freakishly athletic runningbacks on the team. If you go back in history, you’ll see guys like Bruce Ryans, Jessie Williams, George Scalley, etc. All of these great Dover backs seem to be wrapped up in a nice, neat 5-4, 150-pound package called Masyn Sanchez. Words like explosive and dynamite come to mind when describing the way this kid plays.
Where’s the Beef: At 6-4, 300-pounds OT/DT Rene Garin brings the beef for sure. What opposing teams should know this kid is a total athlete. Coach Gregorio said, “Rene is a force to be reckoned with.” Trust me, no one has an answer for him.
Emotional Leader: The emotional leader of this team is without a doubt senior linebacker Oscar Vindel (5-10, 200). Vindel is the enforcer on defense and has his helmet in on every play. He also the on-the-field general who make sure his teammates remain focused.
Will be a Household Name: EVERYBODY is going to know who sophomore quarterback Christian Acevedo (5-10, 180) is after Week 1. Physically, Acevedo is varsity built and has all the tools and can make all the throws. His natural talent sets him apart alone. Beyond that he is a tough, throwback type player who leads by example. Coach Gregorio said he could not throw him out of the weight room in the off-season if he wanted to. If you are a Dover season ticket holder pre-order your tickets for the next two years because you are in for a treat.
Beast Watch: Linebacker Jason Baun is a defensive player with a chip on his shoulder. Off the field he’s the perfect gentleman. When he straps on his helmet, it is like Mr. Hyde comes out.
Without a doubt my favorite place to watch a football game is Hamilton Field in Dover on a Friday Night. It is like going to a minor league baseball game. The facility is beautiful, the atmosphere is pleasant, the food is great, the people are fantastic, the marching band always sounds wonderful and the cheerleaders are really into rooting on their brothers on the field. I am telling you, if you are an out of towner looking for a nice thing to do on a Friday night, bring the whole family.
What’s an added bonus this year is the product on the field is going to be top notch. This team does not stop at the stud sophomore quarterback, the freakishly talented junior runningback and big senior brute of a lineman. There are a whole host of other players that make this year’s Tiger team a legitimate team.
Coach Gregorio describes a vibe he hasn’t seen at Dover during his first few years as head man. “This is a unique group. They are just an unselfish group of high character players.”
Gregorio told me that this group of players seem to really “get it” and said that none of these kids care about individual accomplishments or about who scores. If one person scores they look at it like they all score.
Coming into this season it looks like the Tigers have a lot of the right things in place. They still need to navigate a very competitive schedule before they hoist up the NJSIAA trophy at midfield of MetLife Stadium.
Every team on their schedule is good so staying focused will be a key component for Dover. Staying healthy will also be crucial for this group who caught the injury bug bad last season. If this group can do that and ride some momentum heading into November, they have just as good a chance of playing in December as anyone else.
9/17 @ Kittatinny
9/23 @ Hoboken
9/30 Hanover Park
10/7 Newark Central
10/14 @ Kinnelon
10/28 @ Pequannock