Trumbull-New Canaan football
After a dramatic win over Bridgeport Central High last week, the Trumbull High football team looked to upset FCIAC powerhouse New Canaan on Friday. Buoyed by the excitement of Senior Night, the Eagles played with pride, but were no match for the visiting Rams.
New Canaan junior quarterback Nick Cascione ran for two scores and passed for another as the Rams jumped out early on the Eagles on the way to a 49-7 victory.
The game started rough for the Eagles, as they moved the ball just one yard on their first possession and punter Tyler Plofkin slipped, giving New Canaan (8-1) the ball at the Trumbull 20.
Led by a strong push from the defensive line of Mike Garrity, Chris Scott, Paul Angelucci and Eric Anderson, Trumbull forced New Canaan into two fourth-down situations, but couldn’t stop the Rams’ eight-play march to a 7-0 lead with 7:28 left in the first quarter.
Trumbull quarterback Nick Roberts and running back Ryan Pearson each posted six-yard runs to start Trumbull’s second possession, but Roberts was picked off on a deep pass attempt.
New Canaan turned the interception into a 14-0 advantage three minutes later, as Cascione and Frank Cognetta (56 yards) pushed the ball downfield with Cascione taking it in from 28 yards out.
The New Canaan defense again stuffed the Eagles attack, but Trumbull showed it wasn’t ready to go down easy as Daniel Paolino picked off Cascione at the end of the first quarter.
A three-and-out by Trumbull quickly gave the ball back to the Rams at the start of the second quarter, but the Eagles defense again kept the home team in the game as Nick DeRosa intercepted a pass in the Trumbull red zone.
Ryan Keklik and Garrity quelled the New Canaan rush attack and Rob Christiani posted a sack to stall the Rams’ on their next possession.
But, a deep pass down the middle deflated the defense and Cascione struck again with a 15-yard scoring run to give the visitors a 21-0 lead with four minutes left in the half.
Cascione increased his team’s lead to 28-0 before interception with a string of sizable runs and an 18-yard touchdown pass 37 seconds before intermission.
The Trumbull defense retained its aggression after halftime.
After a failed onside kick gave New Canaan good field possession, the Eagles closed the door near the goal line.
Keklik stepped up to stuff Cascione at the six-yard line and then batted down a pass to force a fourth-and-goal.
Keklik flushed Cascione from the packet and Josh Dumas plastered the Rams star to get the ball back to the Eagles.
The Trumbull attack appeared rejuvenated by the defensive stand, as Roberts connected with Paolino for nine yards and found the senior receiver again on third down for a 13-yard strike.
The momentum ended there, however, as three straight incomplete passes forced a punt.
The Rams put a choke hold on the contest with back-to-back scores that made the count 42-0 with seconds left in the third quarter.
Trumbull found the end zone with five minutes left in the game, when Marc Cesare burned down the right sideline for a 45-yard touchdown run.
Pearson split the uprights for a successful extra point.
“The seniors work hard. They are great kids and I just wish we could have won some more games for them, but we do have a big game left on Thanksgiving,” Trumbull coach Bob Maffei said.
“We can have a 5-5 season, which would be a lot of progress from what we had last year, so we’re not going to give up and we are going to keep working.”