The Lonesome Polecat: YOUR semifinal repository~!
Whelp, Semifinal Sunday was something.
(Honestly, we didn't realize we used alliteration until long after the fact. Sorry)
• Windsor rallied back from an 18-point deficit and stunned top-seeded St. Joseph on the road, 35-31 (and avenged a 45-22 home loss to the Cadets back on Sept. 24).
• Killingly had over 100 less total yards than Branford. .... and won.
• Cromwell mashed Ansonia, 46-7, and, as Paul Augeri twitted, when was the last time Ansonia was ever on the wrong end of a running clock?
It's 2021. It's been the wildest season in memory. It's the playoffs. Nothing should surprise us anymore.
YOUR state finals this Saturday are as follows:
CLASS LL: No. 1 Fairfield Prep (11-1) vs. No. 3 Darien (11-1) at Trumbull High, 3 p.m.
CLASS L: No. 3 Maloney (11-1) vs. No. 5 Windsor (11-1) at Veterans Stadium (at Willow Brook Park), New Britain, 11 a.m. It's also a battle between two Central Connecticut Conference division champions (Maloney won D-1, Windsor D-2).
CLASS M: No. 1 Killingly (11-0) vs. No. 2 Rockville (10-2) at Veterans Stadium, 3 p.m.
CLASS S: No 1 Bloomfield (12-0) vs. No. 2 Cromwell/Portland (12-0) at Trumbull, 11 a.m.
(When you have six teams east of the Route 15/I-91 connector, two of those teams are going to have to make the trip to Trumbull. .... unless a neutral site in Hartford County suddenly agreed to host it.)
The following is YOUR Cliff Notes' version of Sunday's semis:
No. 1 Fairfield Prep 24, No. 5 Shelton 3
The Jesuits scored three third-quarter touchdowns to break the game wide-open and cement themselves as the El Supremo of the Southern Connecticut Conference this season.
Dan Barnick scored on runs of 38 and 65 yards for Prep and Connor Smith threw a 71-yard touchdown pass to James Iaropoli. Aidan Graham also nailed a 43-yard field goal (impressive).
Cristiano Rosa kicked a 26-yard field goal for the Gaels (9-3).
The Jesuits clubbered Shelton, 54-0, on Nov. 5.
To learn more about this game, read Mike Fornabaio's story over at the GameTimeCT.com/Hearst Inc. monolith.
No. 3 Darien 24, No. 2 New Canaan 10
The Blue Wave get a little revenge for a 12-7 loss to New Canaan on Thanksgrabbing and advance to their seventh final in eight seasons.
Darien struggled to move the ball against the Rams the first time around. That wasn't an issue Sunday as it had a resounding edge in total yards (356 to 163) and time of possession (32 minutes, 5 seconds to 15:55).
Tighe Cummiskey ran 33 times for 149 yards and a touchdown for the Blue Wave and Jeremiah Stafford had 10 carries for 86 yards and two touchdowns. Also, Isaac McMillan kicked a 30-yard field goal, Joe Cesare had two interceptions and Robert MacLehose added another.
Henry Cunney completed 12 of 30 passes for 135 yards including a touchdown and four interceptions, Vincent Cognetta caught a 5-yard touchdown pass and Conor Bailey had an interception for New Canaan (10-2), which was the top-ranked team in both The Day state coaches' and GameTimeCT/New Haven Register media Top 10 polls headed into states.
To learn more about this game, read Dave Ruden's two game stories at The Ruden Report and Dave Stewart's over at the GameTimeCT.com/Hearst Inc. monolith.
No. 3 Maloney 45, No. 7 Masuk 21
Joziah Gonzalez caught seven passes for 87 yards and two touchdowns and scored on a 53-yard punt return as the Spartans continued their PATH OF RAGE and won their 11th straight game.
Angel Arce completed 12 of 15 passes for 188 yards and two touchdowns for the Spartans, who led 42-7 with 5:43 left in the FIRST HALF.
Here's how great Maloney played — Spencer STUDLEY took over at quarterback when Arce left the game with both a bone bruise and muscle spasm and proceeded to throw two touchdown passes. Eep.
Nick Saccu scored on a 64-yard run and caught a 49-yard touchdown pass from Dylan Jackson for the Panthers (9-3). Jackson also threw a late 10-yard touchdown pass to Ryan Tartaro.
To learn more about this game, read Sean Krofssik's story over at the Meriden Record-Journal or Dan Nowak's over at the GameTimeCT.com/Hearst Inc. monolith.
No. 5 Windsor 35, No. 1 St. Joseph 31
We repeat — Windsor trailed by 18 points at halftime and outscored the defending champion, 22-0, in the second half to win on the road.
Elijah Cromartie completed 15 of 28 passes for 207 yards with four touchdowns and three interceptions for Windsor. That included a go-ahead 7-yard touchdown pass to Ray Rodriguez with 5:08 left in the game. Jalon Williams later had an interception to ice the game.
Shawn Bell ran 30 times for 140 yards and had a sack, Prince Samuels had two catches for 33 yards and two touchdowns and added a sack and Jaevion Walcott added three catches for 53 yards and a score for Windsor.
Maxwell Warren had eight catches for 109 yards and three touchdowns and ran three times for 75 yards and a score for the Cadets (10-2) and Matt Morrissey completed 17 of 38 passes for 217 yards with three touchdowns and two interceptions.
To learn more about this game, read raconteur Dom Amore's story over at the Hartford Courant, Kyle Maher at the Manchester Journal-Inquirer, Joe "Buckets" Morelli's from the GameTimeCT.com/Hearst Inc. monolith and John Nash's over at The Ruden Report.
No. 1 Killingly 13, No. 5 Branford 12
Thomas Dreibholz threw a go-ahead 15-yard touchdown pass to Soren Rief with seven minutes remaining in the game as Killingly scraped past the Hornets.
Branford (9-3) suffocated Killingly's offense through three quarters. It finished with an edge in total yards (261-159), including holding Team RPO (RUN PEOPLE OVER) to 38 yards on 26 carries.
Killingly prevailed thanks to Dreibholz, Ben Jax and its defense. Dreibholz completed 6 of 16 passes for 121 yards and two touchdowns and Jax had three catches for 96 yards, including catches of 46 and 41 yards to set up both of his team's touchdowns.
Keith Perry had two sacks, Noah Colangelo and Alex Potapskiy each had an interception and Seth Dootson recovered a fumble at the Branford 25-yard line with over six minutes left which allowed Killingly to run out the clock.
Nate Chieffo ran 17 times for 119 yards, Zach Turbert threw a 21-yard touchdown pass to John Frawley and Cole Snider scored on a 1-yard run for the Hornets (9-3).
To learn more about this game, read Dave Phillips' story over at the GameTimeCT.com/Hearst Inc. monolith or this weirdo's story at this here website.
No. 2 Rockville 42, No. 6 Torrington 12
Travon Edmondson ran 22 times for 124 yards four touchdowns as the Rams scored 42 unanswered points to reach their first state since 1995.
Matt Ryan completed all four of his passes for 84 yards and two touchdowns for Rockville and DeShaun Perry caught every one of those passes.
Sean Clinkscales ran 18 times for 132 yards and two touchdowns for Torrington (8-4).
The cretin who picked the semifinals at this here blog botched picking the winner of this here game in spectacular fashion, so the Rams thrashing a team that runs GOD'S FATHER'S OFFENSE (single wing) is suitable salt in said cretin's wounds.
To learn more about this game, read stories by Adam Betz's from the Manchester Journal-Inquirer, Gerry deSimas, the alpha and the omega at his Collinsville Press website, Pete Paguaga's from the GameTimeCT.com/Hearst Inc. monolith and Kevin Roberts’ over at the Waterbury Anarchist-American. That's a lot of hoomons who were focused on this here game.
CLASS S, or, "The One the Cretin Catastrophically Picked Wrong”
No. 1 Bloomfield 22, No. 5 New Fairfield 14
Davion Kerr caught two touchdown passes from Darrien Foster and intercepted a pass late to ice the game.
New Fairfield turned it over SIX times. The WARHAWKS' Howard Simpson recovered a fumble in the end zone after the REBELS' botched a punt. D'Andre Alvelo also forced a fumble that was recovered by teammate Dallas Rose when New Fairfield had first-and-goal from the Bloomfield 3-yard line with 6:05 left.
Justin McCormack threw a 48-yard touchdown pass to Ryan Fata and scored on a 5-yard run for New Fairfield (9-3).
To learn more about this game, read Bill Bloxsom's story over at the GameTimeCT.com/Hearst Inc. monolith and Lori Riley's at the Hartford Courant.
No. 2 Cromwell/Portland 46, No. 3 Ansonia 7
Wow. Just wow.
Cole Brisson completed 17 of 23 passes for FIVE HUNDRED YARDS and SIX touchdowns, five of which were to Teddy Williams (nine catches, 332 yards).
David Cassetti ran 21 times for 92 yards and a touchdown for the Chargers (10-2) and Darell McKnight had 22 carries for 70 yards.
To learn more about this game, read Paul Augeri's story over at the GameTimeCT.com/Hearst Inc. monolith and Mark Jaffee’s at the Waterbury Republican-American.
• • • •
Thanks for reading. More later in the week.
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