The Morning After: Quick Hits And Random Thoughts

The New Canaan football team takes the field for its opener with Daniel Hand. (Photo: Chris Cody)

The New Canaan football team takes the field for its opener with Daniel Hand. (Photo: Chris Cody)

In this always-connected world, we get increased information at a more immediate rate.

But that doesn’t make us any better at predicting games. Especially high school football.

Such was the case Friday night, and the first three days of the season, when what we thought we knew, we didn’t. Or maybe we did. We don’t know yet.

As we await the Trinity Catholic-Sheehan outcome today to break the 8-8 tie in the FCIAC-SCC Challenge, and Westhill and Norwalk play their league opener, the early returns are we could be in for a wild season.

The Blitz 450

Outside the league, Southington was an overwhelming favorite as the No. 1 team in the state. It edged Glastonbury by a field goal. Darien was a near-consensus favorite in the FCIAC. It trailed Hillhouse at halftime before pulling away for a 47-25 victory.

Football is the most analyzed sport, because it is the most popular, there are fewer games in an overall season and they are played weekly.

Thus, we tend to look a little too long under the hood, searching for trends on a seven-day basis.

So what we thought we knew leading up to this weekend thus far has not proved true. Yet. Maybe they are a portent of things to come. Perhaps they are aberrations. We are uncertain, because the landscape could look significantly different a week from now.

Or maybe not.


Here are a few quick thoughts from a wild night.

— New Canaan came away with an impressive 21-14 road win at Daniel Hand. A defense that was supposed to be in a rebuilding mode, and with a new coordinator (Chris Silvestri), made a strong debut. Three touchdown passes from new quarterback Mike Collins and two scoring receptions from reigning Class L final MVP Alex LaPolice.

New Canaan quarterback Mike Collins threw for three touchdowns against Hand. (Photo: Chris Cody)

New Canaan quarterback Mike Collins threw for three touchdowns against Hand. (Photo: Chris Cody)

— The Mark Ecke era opened in Danbury with a 35-15 win over Hamden. Quarterback Anfreny Ith ran for two touchdowns and threw for another. We are all expecting the Hatters to return to being a consistently strong team. Friday was the first step.

— Staples coach Marce Petroccio had the love-hate thing going after a 3-0 loss to Xavier on a field goal with 1.3 seconds left. Loved the defense, hated the offense. The Wreckers were without the versatile Jake Melnick, who has a torn labrum. Petroccio said he should be back in a couple of weeks. Will Newman and Jackson Ward were outstanding for the Wreckers. I was there. Not sure yet what to make of Staples.

— A good night to be a Fairfield football player. Warde, a sleeper to many, got off to a nice start with a 24-21 win over Foran. Brendan Bisack threw for three touchdowns, two to Ryan Brown. Ludlowe, mentioned by almost nobody, had the most one-sided win by an FCIAC team, 43-0 over Lyman Hall. Bryan Pacewicz had three scoring passes.

— I would put much more stock into the second-half Blue Wave than the first-half Blue Wave. Darien coach Rob Trifone thought his team was overconfident. Perhaps. Maybe just a slow start. We learn a lot more Friday night when Darien travels to Greenwich, which lost to West Haven 35-22. Tough loss with Darien and New Canaan on deck.

— Trifone gets off to a huge lead for quote of the year. He told Hearst’s Andrew Callahan “I would say our kids came in here a little overconfident. And they’re high school kids. And they read the damn papers you guys print.”

C’mon Rob, a little love for the press.

— Thanks to the powers that be for the FCIAC-SCC Challenge. A shame we can’t kick off every season with what seems like a week of playoffs. It has been two great years.