SPRINGFIELD, Mass (WGGB) –Every year there is always a great team. And every year there is always a great player. But not every year is the great playing playing on the great team.
This year in the City of Homes we have that winning combination. The Putnam Beavers are ranked number one in the MassLive Western Mass high school football poll, and the guy that makes the top ranked Beaver go is senior captain Melquawn Pinkney.
Quick as lightning and tough as nails, Pinkney has spent the first five weeks of the season rewriting the WMass record books. His season included a WMass record 421 yards on just 17 carries in Putnams 66-0 win over Agawam.
“I got a lot more to me than just quickness. I think I have the power to run to my route if I really need to. I try and give them that look every game.”
“So I’m going to try and keep them off balance with my speed and power.”
And Putnam’s Melquawn Pinkney is indeed the perfect blend of speed and power.
This season it’s Putnam and not Longmeadow that sits a top the rankings. And the busiest beaver of them all wears a number six on his Jersey. Six as in six points.
Pinkney has scored 19 touchdowns in the first five games of the season. He’s rushed for more than 12-hundred yards. And Pinkney has basically made life miserable for opposing team.
Melquan Pinkney may be slight in stature, but he’s extra large in deeds.
“College’s really don’t look at me because of my size,” said Pinkney. But if they would actually see me play they’ll see in my eyes the pain I have.”
“I work hard every day and I go hard every day because of my size. Somebody 6′ 4″ 220lbs will get a D-1 scholarship. But since I’m 5′ 9″ 160lbs, I won’t get a D-1 scholarship.”
“He plays bigger than his size,” said Putnam’s running backs coach Rashid Thomas. “He’s about 165lbs, but he runs like he’s 200lbs. He always delivers the blow.”
The breakout season Melquawn and his Putnam teammates are enjoying has been hard earned and a long time in coming.
Last year Putnam lost two games to South Hadley by a combined total of three points. A field goal in the final minutes of last years Division II Super Bowl made the Tigers champions. It also gave Pinkney and his teammates a lot of extra motivation.
“That was the worst feeling that I’ve had in a long time because I love football so much,” said Pinkney.
“Every time I loose it’s a pain in my heart that I just hate. Even if I have the pain I’m going to hold the pain inside and just keep on using the pain. Just to keep on working every day. Everyday.
“I would like to give my coaches a Super Bowl this year and an undefeated Super Bowl season. I don’t think Putnam has had that in its history. So it would be good to give them one.”
Putnam will play South Hadley the first week of November, and then hopes to play in a Super Bowl the first week of December.
Enjoying a super senior season, Putnam’s Melquawn Pinkney is this weeks ABC40/Fox6 Athlete of the Week.