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Athlete of the Week: East Longmeadow’s Mike Maggipinto

East Longmeadow, MASS—Too often when we associate milestone records with high school football, the image of the accomplished player is a towering and imposing figure. You probably shouldn’t mention that to East Longmeadow’s Mike Maggipinto who is shattering that stereotype after becoming only the fourth in program history to rush for over 2,000 yards.

“Honestly, it means a lot to me but I think it means more to all of us as a team,” Maggipinto said, “Really at the end of the day, once again, it’s a team achievement. When I run for a touchdown or did something like that, we did it as a unit.”

Ask anyone involved with the program how tall the sophomore speedster is and they’d tell you 5’6 on a good day. Those same people would probably mention the impeccable work ethic that goes into molding him into the player that he is.

“He’s probably the hardest practice player that we’ve ever had at East Longmeadow,” head coach Scott Raymond said, “Every down, every practice is almost as similar as what he’s going to do in a game. That’s what makes him such a special football player.”

“I really worked hard this offseason,” Maggipinto said, “I realized that if I wanted to compete at a higher level, I had to rise to the challenge and get my speed and agility up to not only make people miss but be able to make a hole with your own strength.”

With 2013 in the books, the attention shifts to next season. It’ll be a new look team for the Spartans but the offensive gameplan will still start and end with number 10.

“There is a lot of different things I can improve on. I looked back at some film of myself and I was satisfied but there was lots of things I could’ve done better,” Maggipinto said, “I could’ve hit the hole a little bit harder, I could’ve blocked a little bit better, maybe I missed an assignment. There’s always things you can improve on.”

While setting records became the norm this season, it still remains a team effort to Maggipinto and winning still remains the priority.

“You can be a better player, a better friend, a better teammate; just be the best you can be and be the best player and teammate you can be every single day and every single week you go out there,” Maggipinto said.

Insert every cliche you want about the Herculean prowess of being a football player. This spark plug will forever prove you otherwise.