Photo: Andy Hilton/recruit757
Coach Adam Amerine is preparing his George Mason squad for tougher competition
by Jim McGrath, recruitNoVA
As his Mustang team prepares to move up to Class 3 this fall, George Mason coach Adam Amerine took a moment last Saturday to reflect on how far his program has come in recent years.
Standing on the sideline of “Field 5” on the Falls Church High campus, Amerine watched as his team’s receiver Michael Turner snared a bomb pass for a touchdown score, giving Mason a tenuous 12-6 lead over the host Jaguars, a Class 5 playoff team in 2018. Although, Falls Church would come back to win 16-13, the fight of his team gave the coach reason to be proud.
“We’re moving to the (3B) Northwestern District next year,” said Amerine, who has been with the Mason program since 1998, but is getting ready to serve in his third year as head coach.
Although his team finished with a 2-7 mark in 2018, the coach feels that the move will be a good one.
“We’ll be with Brentsville, Warren County, and James Monroe (in the Northwestern).” Speaking of Brentsville, who enjoyed a repeat playoff appearance in 2018, he added, “two years ago, we beat them, although they got us 12-0 last season.” Thinking out loud, he continued, “Warren is another team from the Bull Run (Mason’s last district in Class 2).
Amerine has good reason for his optimism. “I feel like we’re a better team. We’re very young, with only five seniors.”
There are examples. “Evans Rice (who threw the bomb to Turner) was a freshman last year. Like a lot of guys, he got thrown into the fire.” There are other players who will contribute mightily in 2019. “Enzo Paradiso (6-1, 165, Sr.) is another wide receiver who will help us. Cale Reinfurt (5-10. 200, Sr.) will play inside linebacker and guard for us.”
Some things will never change. Mason will set up in a double-wing offense, continuing their tradition as a run-first team. “We’ve been double-wing for years,” said Amerine. Laughing at the irony of making the statement during a passing league competition, he noted, “We only throw three or four times a game. THIS (looking back on to the field) is our hurry-up offense.”
The Mustangs will open the season against Falls Church, renewing an inter-city rivalry, even though the Jaguars are located in Fairfax County, while the Mustangs play within the city limits.
“Our last game against Falls Church was in 2007.”
Moving up to scrimmage against teams such as Potomac Falls and Broad Run was just one more step toward the next plateau. Winning some games in the Northwestern District this fall will let Coach Amerine know that his plan is working.
– Jim McGrath