Ledyard beats Fitch 55-20
Ledyard — Someone messed up Ledyard's house.
The Colonels responded by messing up rival Fitch on Thanksgiving Day.
Vandals painted the words "Fitch 2016" and falcon logo, among other things, onto Bill Mignault Field overnight.
Senior Luke Saccone sliced up the Falcons in multiple ways while Ledyard hammered out 376 rushing yards in a 55-20 mauling of their Eastern Connecticut Conference Large Division rival.
"We took care of business," Ledyard senior Ty Ebdon said. "Whoever did that, yeah, it motivated us. ... (We) came in here fired up and took it to them."
Up next for the Colonels — a home rematch against Bacon Academy in next Tuesday's CIAC Class M quarterfinals at 6:30 p.m.
The sixth-seeded Bobcats beat third-seeded Ledyard, 25-22, on Sept. 26.
It wasn't as if the Colonels (9-1, 4-1) lacked incentive before their field was tagged. A win would get them a home quarterfinal. They also wanted to hold onto Colonel Ledyard's sword, which has been in their possession since 2007.
"We didn't make a huge deal of it," Ledyard head coach Jim Buonocore said. "I took some pictures. I put it out on Twitter, so the kids saw it well before they got here. By the time they arrived in the locker room, it was covered up (with green paint).
"There was a brief mention in terms of (the) respect factor and our field. Certainly, I think it didn't hurt (as motivation). I don't think it was anything that we needed. We were (already) very excited and we knew everything that we were playing for."
Saccone said, "It definitely put a fire in my gut. It definitely pushed us to this good win."
Saccone's fingerprints were all over the Colonels' win as he ran 10 times for 170 yards and a touchdown, caught a 27-yard touchdown pass, and kicked seven extra points. His best work might have been at defensive back as he was assigned to Fitch's top receiver, Luke Letellier.
Letellier got his catches (six for 70 yards).
Saccone got his, too, in the form of three interceptions.
"This whole week, all I was doing was focusing on locking him up," Saccone said. "He's a great receiver. He has great hands. He runs great routes. Props to him. But I was really confident."
Falcons head coach Mike Ellis Jr. said, "Saccone won the matchup. ... You have to give him a lot of credit because he played big in this game. We thought we were going to be able to have a little bit of an advantage, but we didn't."
Fitch finished 5-5 (4-2) in Ellis' first season after going winless last year.
Senior Justin Carter ran for a 14-yard touchdown for Ledyard and caught another of 7 yards from Ebdon. Junior Manny Deshields-Sanabria added 12 carries for 100 yards and a touchdown.
Senior Devin Conde ran for a 6-yard touchdown for the Colonels. Classmate Tannor Daggett, a 285-pound lineman converted into a fullback, scored on a 2-yard run.
"The way their offense was going, they're pounding and they're pounding and they're pounding," Ellis Jr. said. "The third quarter, you see the effect. They're (my kids) beat up. They're having trouble coming back. We did not create a new line of scrimmage. They controlled the line of scrimmage."
Ledyard senior Daric Johnson added a 30-yard fumble return for a touchdown.
"Everybody did their part today," Ebdon said. "The line was pushing the pile five-to-six yards a clip. It was just awesome."
Fitch senior Robert Duncan threw a 24-yard touchdown to classmate Parker Gibson. Junior Cleon Mclish (45 yards) and Gibson (7 yards) also ran for fourth-quarter touchdowns after Ledyard went ahead 55-6 and pulled its starters.
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