Fitch puts together dominating effort in 28-7 win over NFA
Norwich — Fitch has been trying all season to get its inside-outside combination of fullback Thomas Williams and slotback Melakai Maddox both chugging at the same time.
The Falcons got what they’ve hoped for on Friday night. Maddox ran for two touchdowns and Williams ran for another as Fitch downed Norwich Free Academy, 28-7, in an Eastern Connecticut Conference Division I football game.
“We’re a pretty good duo,” Maddox said. “We block for each other. We work together as a really good team. He has my back and I have his back.”
The win keeps Fitch (5-2, 2-0) very much alive in the CIAC Class L playoff race with three games remaining. It began Friday ranked 11th.
The top eight teams make states in each of the four divisions.
Maddox ran nine times for 142 yards and Williams ran 18 times for 112 yards.
“We’ve been looking for that all year long,” Fitch head coach Mike Ellis said. “We haven’t gotten a chance to get that going because we’ve been so inconsistent at the fullback position.
“It was very nice to have Thomas and Melakai really complementing (each other) because NFA did a good job. They adjusted against some of our sets to take away Thomas (up the middle) and then, all of the sudden, Melakai was able to get to the outside.”
Skylar Noland and Maddox each had an interception and Elijah Shelton had two sacks.
It was the first conference loss of the season for NFA (3-5, 1-1). Its offense tailed off in the second quarter when Jayden Desilus injured his ankle and was knocked out of the game. He was replaced by Colby Ayuyu.
Wildcats receiver Maxson Pierre Louis also missed a good part of the game.
NFA had a good chance to take the initial lead on its second drive of the game. It went 54 yards in 10 plays and had a third-and-3 play at the Fitch 13. The Wildcats fumbled on the next play to give the Falcons the ball at their own 17.
Fitch then went on a long 15-play drive in which it converted three third down plays.
Maddox took a pitch from Ben Perry and ran for a 17-yard touchdown with 8 minutes, 19 seconds left in the first half.
Fitch followed with some trickery. It lined up for the extra point but Shawn Beebe, the holder, pulled the ball back and threw a 2-point conversion pass to Noland to give the Falcons an 8-0 lead.
Beebe ran for a 22-yard touchdown with 7:14 left in the third quarter as the Falcons went ahead, 14-0.
Williams ran for a 44-yard touchdown as Fitch extended its lead to 21-0 with 3:03 remaining in the third.
Ayuyu finally got NFA’s offense moving with over seven minutes left in the game. He threw a 13-yard pass to Dangelo Aristilde on fourth-and-7 from the Wildcats’ 18-yard line to keep the driving moving.
Aristilde threw a 6-yard touchdown pass to Talon Amado Jr. with 3:30 left in the game as the Wildcats cut their deficit to 21-7.
Maddox ran for an 11-yard touchdown with 2:08 remaining in the game.
NFA Fitch football photo gallery
For more photos from the NFA Fitch football game click here.
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