The 1949 Gloucester football team entered the season as a bit of an unknown commodity.
The Fishermen returned just five players from a 1948 team that was the runner up for the Class B State Title. Head coach Nate Ross may not have known exactly what he had when training camp opened up, but he found out quickly that the team was a force to be reckoned with, and ultimately a championship team.
Gloucester’s offense broke records in 1949 leading the state in points scored with 306 (30.6 points per game) which was also a Gloucester High School record at the time, a record that stood for 38 years until it was broken in 1987.
A star studded backfield and undersized but highly effective offensive line saw Gloucester finish the season on a tear straight to the Class B state championship, Gloucester’s first state title since 1938, when it took home the Class C state title.
The Fishermen’s record setting offense and richly talented backfield still resonate to this day as one of the most successful in program history.
Gloucester may have had just five known commodities entering the ‘49 season, but those five players were some of the most feared players on the North Shore including captains Anthony “Hogan” Garrisi and John Misuraca at quarterback and guard respectively. Tailback Jack “Rabbit” Lucido is still seen as one of the program’s most dynamic runners while end Jim Pike and linebacker Farrell Roberts were both all star quality players.
It was Gloucester’s record-setting single wing offense (known today as the wild cat) that garnered most of the headlines during the 1949 season. Ross had five backs at his disposal and all of them were productive in Garrisi, Lucido and Jerry Nicastro at quarterback, tailback and fullback respectively while Arthur “Sookie” Sawyer and Bob Jedrey split time at wing back.