Oct 272013
Although Wolcott quarterback Vincent Gambino threw for three touchdowns, Ansonia forced him to commit four turnovers -- including this strip sack by Tyler O'Connell. Credit: GWImages

Although Wolcott quarterback Vincent Gambino threw for three touchdowns, Ansonia forced him to commit four turnovers — including this strip sack by Tyler O’Connell. The Chargers won their 35th in a row with a 62-27 victory over the Eagles. Credit: GWImages

Although there wasn’t much down-to-the-wire excitement in Week 7, we saw plenty of noteworthy performances and the shaping of playoff picture for several NVL teams.

What Happened

In Wolcott, Ansonia’s Arkeel Newsome tied the state record he already shares by posting his third straight 300-yard rushing game in the Chargers’ 62-27 win over the Eagles. Newsome went for 321 yards and four touchdowns on 34 attempts, and he added his first punt-return touchdown of the season on a 79-yarder. Jai’Quan McKnight accounted for three other touchdowns, including a gorgeous pass to Witold Gul in double coverage just before the half.

Arkeel Newsome's 321 yards against Wolcott put him over 300 yards for the third game in a row, which ties the state record. Credit: GWImages

Arkeel Newsome’s 321 yards against Wolcott put him over 300 yards for the third game in a row, which ties the state record. Credit: GWImages

The Chargers’ defensive backfield looked a bit vulnerable for a lot of the night. Wolcott’s Vincent Gambino finished 19-of-37 for 282 yards, three touchdowns and three interceptions, and the Eagles’ Adam Santopietro owned the middle of the field all night with 10 catches for 133 yards. Wolcott’s wide receivers won a number of one-on-one battles with Ansonia’s cornerbacks (including a few against Newsome and McKnight) until the Chargers finally got a little more aggressive later in the third quarter.

The game basically clinched the NVL Brass Division title for Ansonia (to be fair, it won’t officially clinch until likely Week 9 against Seymour), which of course is pretty low on the totem pole for what the Chargers want to do by the end of the season. Wolcott, on the other hand, will likely need to win out to make the postseason — even then, it’s not a sure bet.

The other noteworthy game of the week was Seymour’s 49-26 win (upset?) over Derby. Coming off a loss to Oxford in which the Wildcats’ offense did nothing, they racked up more than 400 yards of offense against the Red Raiders and dominated the second half. Junior quarterback Frank Marcucio, who was the subject of most of last week’s chatter here on the blog, came through with three touchdown passes (he also threw a pick-six), including two to Christian Thurmond. Joey Salemme also got back on track with 220 yards and a pair of scores. The Wildcats are basically out of the running in Class S, but they can still clinch their first winning season under Tom Lennon with a good finish. Derby lost its third in a row and is also likely out of Class S contention (it has to win out for a chance).

Three other NVL squads chasing the postseason all posted victories. Woodland cruised to a 54-6 win over Sacred Heart as Tanner Kingsley passed for five touchdowns to give him 95 for his career. Naugatuck blasted St. Paul, 59-31, as Jason Bradley threw for 323 yards and six touchdowns (don’t worry; Naugy’s first-string defense only allowed two touchdowns). Holy Cross struggled for a while with Torrington before the Crusaders pulled out a 41-21 win, although Cross starting running back Drew Bialoglowy was injured on the first series.

Kennedy also earned its first win in a 33-15 victory over Watertown, as Elijah Benjamin ran for 215 yards and two touchdowns on 13 carries. Wilby also knocked off Crosby, 32-22.

Who Did It

Top Passers: Logan Marchi (SP): 26-49, 382 yards, 3 TD, 3 INT; Jason Bradley (NHS): 17-33, 323 yards, 6 TD, INT; Vincent Gambino (WOL): 19-37, 282 yards, 3 TD, 3 INT; Connor Finn (THS): 19-36, 271 yards, 2 TD, INT; Tanner Kingsley (WRHS): 11-15, 256 yards, 5 TD; Mike Marshall (CHS): 13-35, 234 yards, 3 TD; Joe Kalosky (HC): 7-16, 179 yards, 2 TD, rush TD; Frank Marcucio (SEY): 6-12, 55 yards, 3 TD, INT

Top Rushers: Arkeel Newsome (AHS): 34 rush, 321 yards, 5 total TD; Joey Salemme (SEY): 26 rush, 220 yards, 2 TD; Elijah Benjamin (KHS): 13 rush, 215 yards, 2 TD; Jacob Thomas (WIL): 17 rush, 154 yards, 2 TD; Joe Lynch (WOL): 10 rush, 119 yards, TD; Tom Douty (NHS): 10 rush, 91 yards; 2 total TD; Jai’Quan McKnight (AHS): 7 rush, 84 yards, 2 TD; Jacob Gonzalez (KHS): 7 rush, 65 yards, 2 TD; Gerron Pendarvis (HC): 9 rush, 42 yards, 2 TD

Top Receivers: Trai Weaver (HC): 6 rec, 142 yards, TD; Adam Santopietro (WOL): 10 rec, 133 yards; Sean McAllen (WRHS): 3 rec, 119 yards, 2 total TD; Reid Morin (SP): 10 rec, 117 yards; Austin Morin (SP): 5 rec, 116 yards, TD; Nate Bresson (THS): 5 rec, 104 yards, TD; Desmond Langs (THS): 8 rec, 103 yards; Nate Franklin (NHS): 3 rec, 95 yards, 2 TD; Ryne Griesenauer (NHS): 5 rec, 88 yards, TD; Daija Fitzpatrick (SP): 5 rec, 82 yards, TD; Bryan Coney (NHS): 2 rec, 55 yards, 2 TD; Jay Pelletier (WOL): 3 rec, 48 yards, 2 TD; Mike Kenney (WRHS): 3 rec, 34 yards, 2 TD; Christian Thurmond (SEY): 2 rec, 27 yards, 3 total TD

(Qualifications: 150 yards and/or 3 TD passing, 100 yards and/or 2 TD rushing, 75 yards and/or 2 TD receiving. Performances only include those posted to MaxPreps and/or reported by local media.)

Blanchette POTW

The Blanchette Sporting Goods Player of the Week is Kennedy running back Elijah Benjamin. Benjamin ran for a career-high 215 yards on only 13 carries and added two touchdowns as the Eagles earned their first victory with a 33-15 win over Watertown. Credit: Kyle Brennan

The Blanchette Sporting Goods Player of the Week is Kennedy running back Elijah Benjamin. Benjamin ran for a career-high 215 yards on only 13 carries and added two touchdowns as the Eagles earned their first victory with a 33-15 win over Watertown. Credit: Kyle Brennan

How to See and Read It

Holy Cross-Torrington: Rep-Am, GameTime CT (photos)
Rep-Am (video), WFSB
Rep-Am (photos)
Rep-Am (photos)
Woodland-Sacred Heart:
Naugatuck-St. Paul:
Rep-Am, Bristol Press (video)

Where It Takes Us

Our headline game in Week 8 will be the Woodland-Holy Cross showdown at Municipal Stadium. The Hawks can clinch the NVL Copper Division championship with a victory over the Crusaders. Cross would not only gain the inside track to the division title with an upset, but it would also be a major stepping stone toward the Class S postseason push (the Crusaders also have Naugatuck and Wolcott remaining, so it won’t be easy). Naugatuck is also a big fan of Holy Cross in this game, because a Crusaders upset is the only way Naugy can get back in the Copper chase.

The other important game next week is the Wolcott-Derby game at DeFilippo Field. Both teams enter on losing streaks (the Eagles have lost two in a row, the Red Raiders three) and the loser of this game will likely be eliminated from postseason contention with four losses.

Other games include St. Paul at Sacred Heart, Watertown at Ansonia, Crosby at Seymour, Kennedy at Torrington and Wilby at Naugatuck.

NVL Fantasy Football Update

Once some more official stats come in, we’ll be able to post the results from Week 7. Newsome’s big game made it awfully tough on Kyle to climb out of a hole to Remmy.

Here are our active lineups entering Week 8. Things may change before kickoff.

Team Kyle: QB Logan Marchi (St. Paul), QB Tanner Kingsley (Woodland), RB Drew Bialoglowy (Holy Cross), RB Jacob Thomas (Wilby), RB Joey Salemme (Seymour), WR Jayson Matos (Wolcott), WR Mike Kenney (Woodland), WR Jay Pelletier (Wolcott), Naugatuck defense

Team Remmy: QB Jason Bradley (Naugatuck), QB Vincent Gambino (Wolcott), RB Arkeel Newsome (Ansonia), RB Joe Lynch (Wolcott), RB Sean McAllen (Woodland), WR Reid Morin (St. Paul), WR Ryne Griesenauer (Naugatuck), WR Adam Santopietro (Wolcott), Ansonia defense

  17 Responses to “Week 7 Wrap: A 3rd 300, 3 for No. 13 and 3 in the Copper”

  1. seymours ground game took advantage of derby defense.good game plan dont know if 55 yds passing will make defenses nervous,but its better than throwing for 300 and losing i guess.anytime you win a valley game its a big win.congrats to Kennedy on win..Not for nothing but HOLY CROSS making playoffs would be a joke.

  2. The unsung hero in the Ansonia-Wolcott game was definitely Witold Gul. The kid went 6 for 8 on PATs, grabbed and INT, broke up passes and laid down a few solid hits as safety, and he brought in that TD catch under double coverage. Ansonia’s secondary may have some holes, but I think he can play a good role in filling them.

    • And he made that pick in the end zone, cutting in front of a Wolcott receiver who looked to be wide open. Apparantly, Gambino saw what we did. And that was that Gul seemed to come out of nowhere on that play.

  3. Ansonia is unbeatable. Newsome putting his rushing record way out of reach likely never to be broken. Wolcott must stop turning the ball over against good teams (10 turnovers the past two weeks) and win out to make playoffs.

    I am surprised by how poorly Watertown has played this season. They always had some big kids and were pretty tough up until a few years ago. Putting the beautiful new turf there has been a curse.

  4. fish—–when oulette left for whatever so did watertown football—–beautiful complex though and they have the atheletes—something is wrong.just to show you some love—i think shelton might sneak in LL with win over X,Six weeks ago shelton-derby matchup looked good—–not sure now.

    • Shelton had a very disappointing loss to Hand. Not supposed to lose when you score 41 points, but no lead is safe against good spread offenses.
      Shelton will not win both games against Xavier and West Haven. They should handle Derby though but we’ll see. This is said to be the best Shelton team since 2007 but that ain’t saying much.

      • Shelton will have a worse record than the 8-2 team a couple of years ago, but is considered by many to be a better team.

  5. ValleyFalls1

    I do not think that Ansonia is unbeatable. Right night, right team, right circumstances (running the full gamut of what could occur). Against Masuk and Wolcott, pass coverage breakdowns were very evident. Yes 3 passes intercepted and some nice hits on receivers; but there were several dropped passes by Masuk and Wolcott receivers. Pass rush on Friday night left a little to be desired. Wolcott played well in some areas (as I said before well coached, talented team).

    I do like what I hear when Brockett is interviewed,”we worry about ourselves and what we do”. Like that very much. While I would like to see a little more variety in the passing offense and a tightening up of pass coverage, I still like what I see and think they do what they do, very well.

    • ddelgado121

      I can only partially agree with that assessment. It’s fairly obvious that the way to do damage to Ansonia is through the air. There is usually a big gap in the middle and the Ansonia DBs seem to have an issue playing press coverage. However, that being said, a major reason why Ansonia still pulls out the wins regardless is Ansonia’s line. When Wolcott rushed Ansonia’s line they hit a wall…constantly. As long as Ansonia’s line keeps opening holes for Newsome to hit, they’ll keep getting the wins.

      I have no idea what happened to Ansonia’s standard “heavy-on-the-blitz” defensive stance thoguh. But the line was still able to put a decent amount of pressure on Gambino. It was enough to force 3 picks and a fumble. Gambino put up good overall numbers, but 4 turnovers is going to translate into a loss when you’re playing a team as fast and as strong as Ansonia.

      • that blitz statement is interesting. the dbs are quick,hard hitting and have shut down ability, it seems like they dont locate ball in time sometime.With that being said id prefer teams to throw because atheletes make big plays,and chargers have plenty of those.The bottom line is if you cant neutralize ansonias lines you got problems.

      • From what I saw, several of Gambino’s longer completions on the outside were under thrown into perfect man coverage, where the receiver has the edge because he sees it first. So the receivers were able to stop and adjust, and the Ansonia DB’s were a little slower to react to that. So wags you are correct – they’re not always locating the ball quickly enough.

  6. ValleyFalls1

    I think part of the problem on Friday night was lack of pressure on Gambino. 3-3 Stack with DBs playing man, needs to have Line and LBs pressure QB into moving around and making mistakes and bad throws and such. I think he was only sacked once, and not pressured very much. Although, that one sack was spectacular and resulted in a fumble (see picture above).
    Wags, you are right, corners are very good, good experienced cover guys, hard hitters and fast. They have been integrating more players into playing corner, and I noticed specific Ansonia DBs following specific Wolcott receivers. There was some double coverage going on also. The three interceptions we timely and momentum changers for sure. Need the rush like we had in masuk game and others for future games against Woodland and Naugatuck, and whomever in states.


  7. Don’t think anyone could stop Ansonia running game.

    • Yo Drake, nobody on their schedule or class S will stop their running game. Nobody in state could stop it this year. You could run for 9,000 yards behind that offensive line if you had any eligibility left Drake.

      • ValleyFalls1

        Based on past life experiences, I have to reiterate, noone is unbeatable. It may take unsual circumstances to beat some said to be unbeatable, but it can happen. Ansonia prevents that by playing every game, every down, every drive as itf their season depends on those moments. There is too much at stake this year for anything otherwise. Yes they have a tremendous offense, yes they are playing really good defense, yes they have a target on their backs with statewide interest and implications.

        Every game is introducing the opposing team with just how good that running game is, how good that offensive line is, and…………………………every game is about introducing the opposing team to “big boy football”, played the Ansonia way!

        Ok off the soap box :)

  8. Kind of shocking losing to Seymour. Even without Small and Barton and a starting defensive tackle, who was suspended earlier in the day, Derby had the lead at halftime. It really looked in hand. Along came the third quarter and this team seemed to fold up. Wolcott which looked manageable to me, now looks like a tall mountain to climb. Hopefully we get a few guys back.