7th grade gridders go undefeated

The Oxford Middle School seventh-grade Blue team. Photo courtesy of Coach Jack Beall.

By Dean Vaglia
Leader Staff Writer
Oxford Middle School’s seventh-grade football teams made history this season by going undefeated for the first time.
“We are proud of these extraordinary accomplishments by both of our 7th Grade football teams. This certainly points to a bright future for these young men,” said Tony DeMare Director of Athletics at Oxford High School.
The Gold team won all six of their games, while the Blue team won five due to a game getting canceled.
“Since the middle school went to having two different teams per grade level — which was 2012 — they’ve never had a grade level go undefeated,” Jack Beall, coach of the seventh-grade Gold team, said. “We played a very difficult schedule. We played against the Clarkston schools, the Lake Orion schools, Rochester [and] Waterford … The success was against a very difficult competition.”
To Beall, the class of 2027 is a particularly talented group of players, especially on the offense.
“There are a lot of very good linemen prospects in that class,” Beall said. “So because we were good up front and able to block people, then we had a good season. It is really that simple.”
Some of the linemen Beall says to look out for are Carlos Solano (Gold), Abraham Ball (Gold), Jake Weaver (Blue), Aidan Ryan (Blue) and Zane Sommers (Blue). The teams’ MVPs are Brayden Mattis (Blue) and Preston Wilder (Gold); both are running backs.
Rosters are balanced in such a way that both teams perform at a similar level.
“We split ‘em up at the beginning of the year,” Beall said. “We try to divide the teams up so that the teams are as equal as possible. We don’t want one team to go win all their games and the other team struggles the whole year. We want them to both be equal and have equity so that the kids feel like it’s fair.”
Beall sees this year’s successes as a good sign for the future of Oxford football.
“These kids as seventh-graders are learning the same system that coach [Zach] Line is doing with the high school,” Beall said. “For them to have this kind of success at a young age and then to be in this system, which by the time that they’re seniors will be six years, they should really have it down. They should really be able to do [Line’s] system in their sleep.”

The Oxford Middle School seventh-grade Gold team. Photo courtesy of Coach Jack Beall.

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