Sep 152014
 
Wolcott quarterback Vincent Gambino will finally get to start his senior year this week against Watertown after his Eagles had a Week 1 bye. (Credit: GWImages)

Wolcott quarterback Vincent Gambino will finally get to start his senior year this week against Watertown after his Eagles had a Week 1 bye. (Credit: GWImages)

Now that we’ve all got our feet wet, it’s time for Week 2 in the NVL.

Crosby and Wolcott finally get their seasons started after enduring Week 1 byes, while Seymour and Holy Cross look to keep up their momentum as heavy favorites. In perhaps the week’s most competitive game, Woodland visits Torrington in a Saturday afternoon NVL Iron Division showdown.

Our Game of the Week will preview Friday’s matchup between Ansonia and Derby, but in the meantime check out our other Week 2 picks, brought to you by DiGiorgi Roofing and Siding.

Thursday, Sept. 18
Woodland at Torrington, 4 p.m.:
 In terms of games being close, this will be the tightest of the week. (By the way, this game was moved from Saturday in Torrington to Thursday in Beacon Falls.)
Remmy’s Take: This game is a toss-up. Woodland’s offense played a solid game last week and its defense shut out Watertown, but the Hawks find themselves playing a tougher opponent this week. We’ll have to see if someone other than Hawks’ RB Sean McAllen has a big game if Woodland wants to leave Torrington with a win. Torrington struggled mightily on offense against one of the league favorites, Naugatuck, but should put up some points this week in front of the home crowd versus a Woodland ‘D’ that may struggle with the size of the Raiders’ offensive weapons.
Kyle’s Take: I got a good sense for what Torrington can do and wants to do on offense in its game against Naugatuck last week. The Red Raiders were able to move the ball a little bit on the Greyhounds, whose defense I expect to be better than that of Woodland. Torrington’s biggest struggle last week came in defending the pass and getting penetration into the backfield. The Raiders won’t have to worry as much about their secondary against a Woodland team that isn’t nearly as adept at throwing. They should be able to move the ball with a balanced offense, while the Hawks already look to be dealing with some injuries. It should be close, but I don’t think Woodland has enough offensive firepower or depth to get this win.
Picks: Remmy- Torrington, 28-27. Kyle- Torrington, 24-20.

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Sep 122014
 

week 1 scoreboard
Welcome to the finish of Week 1. Three games are down, four are to go.

Our headline game is tonight’s Naugatuck-Torrington game at Veterans Field. The Greyhounds need to get off to a good start if they’re actually one of the NVL favorites, while Torrington could go from sleeper to shocker in just 48 minutes. Kyle’s WATR crew — with Post head coach Mike Mannetti subbing for Steve Gesseck — will start its broadcast of that ballgame on 1320 WATR at 6:50 p.m.

In Thursday action, Ansonia welcomed Oxford to the NVL with a 45-0 shutout while Holy Cross’ Joe Kalosky threw three touchdown passes in the Crusaders’ 34-6 win over Wilby. In the best game of the night, Seymour outlasted Amity 33-27 thanks to Joey Salemme’s 361 rushing yards and four touchdowns.

A few links to various items of interest before we get to the live scoreboard:

Here are this week’s NVL Fantasy Football starting lineups. (Kyle and Remmy drafted the teams Thursday afternoon. Jason Bradley and Joey Salemme were the top two picks.)

  • Team Kyle: QB Jason Bradley, QB Jai’Quan McKnight, RB Sean McAllen, RB Drew Bialoglowy, WR Bryan Coney, WR Jay Pelletier, FLEX Nate Bresson, Ansonia defense
  • Team Remmy: QB Vincent Gambino, QB Michael Kreiger, RB Joey Salemme, RB Tajik Bagley, WR Tyler Bailey, WR Jayson Morrison, FLEX Ricky Bartone, Holy Cross defense

Also, keep an eye and an ear out for some good high school football action on the radio this weekend. Kyle will be joining Coach George DeMaio on Saturday at 6:40 a.m. on 960 WELI, and Kyle will be with Sean Patrick Bowley on Laxworm’s “The Show” on Sunday at 11:30 a.m. at Porky’s Cafe in Shelton. Coaches and captains from Seymour and Shelton are set to join us Sunday morning.

That oughta do. Enjoy the rest of Week 1, folks, and we invite you to join the discussion of this week’s games on this thread.


Sep 112014
 
Naugatuck's Jason Bradley (left) and Torrington's Connor Finn (right) should be two of the NVL's top quarterbacks. (Credits: Kyle Brennan)

Naugatuck’s Jason Bradley (left) and Torrington’s Connor Finn (right) should be two of the NVL’s top quarterbacks. (Credits: Kyle Brennan)

It’s time for our first NVL Blog Game of the Week! It’s a pretty obvious choice to start things off as returning powerhouse Naugatuck hosts an on-the-rise Torrington this Friday at 7 p.m. at Veterans Field.

These teams are both bound to be near the top of the NVL, with Naugatuck as a favorite in the eyes of some and Torrington as a sleeper bound for a breakout season. (By the way, this Game of the Week is presented by DiGiorgi Roofing and Siding.)

Remmy’s Keys to the Game: Naugatuck boasts one of the best offenses in the NVL. With that said, it doesn’t need to get too fancy against a Torrington team that doesn’t have the athletes to defend the ‘Hounds. On the flip side, Torrington will try to establish its passing game. However, Naugy has enough athletes to defend it. It’ll be a long night for the Torrington offense and defense.

Kyle’s Keys to the Game: I’ve said it throughout the preseason, but I believe the Greyhounds will go as far as their offensive line takes them. It’s one of the biggest units in the league but didn’t always have enough stamina or fire last season. The offensive weapons are there, as are the defensive playmakers. The trenches just need to be solid. Torrington could also be among the league’s stronger lines, so if the Raiders can establish an advantage inside, that could serve to make this game closer than some will think. The Red Raiders need to string together some long drives and force a turnover or two.

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Sep 102014
 
One of Week 1's more intriguing matchups pits Watertown and its new coach, Luigi Velardi (left), against Woodland and its new coach, Tim Phipps (right). (Credits: Kyle Brennan and Rachael Morin)

One of Week 1’s more intriguing matchups pits Watertown and its new coach, Luigi Velardi (left), against Woodland and its new coach, Tim Phipps (right). (Credits: Kyle Brennan and Rachael Morin)

Welcome back to NVL football! Week 1 is here, so it’s time for predictions. (In case you missed it earlier this week, Kyle and Remmy posted their season predictions with complete previews for all 15 NVL teams.)

It’s expected to be a year of much more parity and competitiveness in the NVL, and that could be reflected in some of the game this week. Woodland and Watertown square off in a battle of the league’s two new head coaches, while Ansonia welcomes Oxford to the conference and Derby visits St. Paul in a rematch of one of last season’s wildest games. Crosby and Wolcott both have byes and will scrimmage each other Thursday in Wolcott at 3:30 p.m.

Our Game of the Week will preview Friday’s matchup between Naugatuck and Torrington, but in the meantime check out our other Week 1 picks, brought to you by Blanchette Sporting Goods.

Thursday, Sept. 11
Wilby at Holy Cross, 6 p.m.:
 In terms of experience vs. inexperience, this might be the most lopsided matchup of the whole season. Cross brings a lot back; Wilby returns almost nobody.
Remmy’s Take: Holy Cross is one of the teams I like to win the league. With a more mature Joe Kalosky at quarterback and a healthy Drew Bialoglowy, expect Holy Cross to put up some points this season — and it all starts this week against a down Wilby team.
Kyle’s Take: Holy Cross shouldn’t really struggle here, but the Crusaders have a history of coming out and laying eggs in Week 1 victories. It’ll be interesting to see what sort of offensive identity Cross tries to establish early this season — particularly because the Crusaders never really found one last year.
Picks: Remmy- Holy Cross, 35-6. Kyle- Holy Cross, 41-0.

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Sep 082014
 
The NVL is poised for a season filled with more parity than any time over the past few years. Naugatuck and quarterback Jason Bradley (left) boast the league's best passing game entering the year. Ansonia and quarterback Jai'Quan McKnight (center) carry a 43-game winning streak heading into this fall. Holy Cross and quarterback Joe Kalosky (right) return eight starters on both sides of the ball. (Credits: GWImages)

The NVL is poised for a season filled with more parity than any time over the past few years. Naugatuck and quarterback Jason Bradley (left) boast the league’s best passing game entering the year. Ansonia and quarterback Jai’Quan McKnight (center) carry a 43-game winning streak heading into this fall. Holy Cross and quarterback Joe Kalosky (right) return eight starters on both sides of the ball. But there are more teams that might make some noise, too. (Credits: GWImages)

Finally, the NVL football season that so many people around the Valley have been waiting an awful long time for is ready to begin. Why is it so anticipated? It’s the first season of the post-Arkeel Newsome era, of course. That means more teams than just Ansonia have a real shot at an NVL championship.

Could the champ be Naugatuck, the team many folks pegged as the favorite stretching all the way back to last year? How about Holy Cross, a team that returns 16 starters and most of its key offensive players? Can Woodland, a team that brings back 15 starters from a state finalist but is missing its record-setting quarterback, be in the mix? What’s to make of Seymour and Derby, the two teams that gave Ansonia its two best NVL games last season?

This season has the chance to be filled with more parity than any in recent memory. Here are some quick thoughts by Kyle and Remmy on the 15 NVL teams, along with links to each team’s preview capsule and a pair of players to watch.

ansonia-2013Ansonia Chargers
2013 Results: 15-0 overall, 9-0 NVL; Class S, NVL champion
Returning Starters: 4 offense, 7 defense (capsule)
Offensive Player to Watch: Tajik Bagley (Jr., RB) – This speedster is the guy who has to take over for Arkeel Newsome. He’s not at Newsome’s level quite yet, but he’s got the potential to be among the league’s best backs.
Defensive Player to Watch: Paul Makinano (Sr., LB) – Ansonia coach Tom Brockett called Makinano the Chargers’ best linebacker last year. He might be the league’s best this year.
Kyle’s Two-Sentence Take: Calling Ansonia vulnerable is uncomfortable, and the Chargers’ vulnerability is most teams’ successful seasons. Things will improve by each game, but the Chargers will have to play four quarters a lot this season.
Remmy’s Two-Sentence Take: Ansonia is still the team to beat in the NVL. While not as dominant as in recent years, with the loss of studs like Andrew Matos and Arkeel Newsome, this team will look to other newcomers like Tajik Bagley and Tyler Bailey to get it back to the promised land.

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Sep 052014
 

WATR logoOne more piece of business before we get to our season predictions, which will be coming your way Sunday.

Here’s this year’s broadcast schedule for 1320 WATR-AM, which will continue its longstanding tradition of broadcasting Naugatuck Valley League football.

Once again, Kyle Brennan will be on play-by-play and Steve Gesseck will be on color and stats. Bob Sagendorf will be the producer.

The schedule is subject to change, so if other late-season matchups becoming more compelling than the ones currently on the schedule, those could enter at a later date. In addition, the schedule was selected with the reality in mind that WATR is a Waterbury-based radio station and not one based in the lower Valley, so we tried to strike a balance.

Friday, Sept. 12: Torrington at Naugatuck
Friday, Sept. 19: Holy Cross at Sacred Heart-Kaynor Tech
Friday, Sept. 26: Holy Cross at Naugatuck
Friday, Oct. 3: Wilby at Wolcott
Thursday, Oct. 9: Kennedy at Holy Cross
Friday, Oct. 10: Naugatuck at Wolcott
Friday, Oct. 17: Pomperaug at Holy Cross
Friday, Oct. 24: Woodland at Naugatuck
Thursday, Oct. 30: Oxford at Sacred Heart-Kaynor Tech
Thursday, Nov. 6: Crosby at Holy Cross
Friday, Nov. 7: Ansonia at Woodland
Friday, Nov. 14: Woodland at Holy Cross
Friday, Nov. 21: St. Paul at Naugatuck
Wednesday, Nov. 26: Seymour at Woodland
Thursday, Nov. 27: Naugatuck at Ansonia

In addition, CPTV Sports will carry live broadcasts of the Sept. 26 Holy Cross-Naugatuck and the Oct. 3 Woodland-St. Paul games. We will post broadcast information each week, along with links to listen to and/or watch broadcasts.