|High School Attended||N. Attleboro|
The football season of 1972 was the start of the most successful era in North Attleboro High School's football history. The wishbone offense was introduced and Big Red Machine got revved up. The Rocketeers featured a devastating ground game with a stable of Hall of Fame running backs. The success that these backs realized was due in a large part to a great offensive line.
Ray Patch was an integral part of this offensive machine. At 5'9" and 150 pounds Patch was the starting center for the Rocketeers during the 1972 and 1973 seasons. His toughness and quickness off the ball were instrumental in North's successful running attack.
Offensive lineman don't get into quoting statistics. However, the numbers that Patch's teams put up offensively are unbelievable the two teams scored a total of 616 points, averages more than 32 points per game, and 95% of their offensive plays were running plays. Execution, ball control, and efficiency were their trademarks. All of this was dependent upon Patch doing his job flawlessly. Opponents would try to disrupt this offensive machine by pressuring Patch. He would not be intimidated. Ray was proficient in getting the ball to the quarterback and executing his blocking responsibility, usually against a much larger defender.
It can be said that Ray Patch was responsible for successfully starting every offensive play. With that in mind the greatest play in North football history, Thanksgiving day 1973, should be chronicled as Patch to Rioux to Lacasse.