Trumbull defeats Westhill with big second quarter
STAMFORD — It was just what the doctor ordered.
The Trumbull football team found the right medicine on the road Saturday as it posted a 35-0 triumph over Westhill at J. Walter Kennedy Stadium.
The win improved Trumbull to 3-6 overall. But more importantly, it snapped a five-game losing streak for the Eagles.
“This was a solid win for us,” said Trumbull coach Marce Petroccio. “Our defense stiffened and produced a touchdown. Our special teams blocked a field goal try and a punt. And our offense scored points as we expanded the playbook.”
Trumbull put 28 points on the board in the second quarter and never looked back as it spoiled Senior Day for Westhill.
The cold afternoon began with promise for Westhill (1-8). The Vikings used a quick short pass approach to reach the Trumbull Red Zone on their opening two offensive possessions.
But Westhill was stymied in the Red Zone.
On its first possession, Trumbull blocked a potential field goal. The second drive was thwarted by an Owen Solano interception at the Trumbull 14.
Westhill quarterback Matt O’Connor completed 26 of 46 passes for 217 yards. But Trumbull’s defense limited the Vikings to 22 yards rushing on six carries.
Trumbull capped a 14-play, 80-yard march with 10:13 left in the second quarter. Sophomore Billy Colbert bulled into the end zone from six yards out for the TD and 7-0 edge. Colbert finished the afternoon with 59 yards rushing on 15 carries as junior RB Mileeq Green is still out injured.
Trumbull’s junior quarterback Riley Simpson struck through the air thanks to a 53-yard pass connection to senior Kyle Atherton for 14-0 with 8:18 left in the second quarter.
Simpson and Atherton would add a 31-yard TD strike just 18.5 seconds before halftime for 28-0.
“I expected to get popped by the defense as I caught the first TD pass. But I was able to escape and outrace them to the (end zone) pylon,” recounted Atherton, who had seven receptions for 147 yards. “Our passing game was clicking. I was fortunate to get the opportunities. Riley (Simpson) has grown and improved so much over the course of the season. He’s more confident. He’s providing more leadership.”
Trumbull senior captain Ray Leonzi contributed the defensive touchdown as he returned an interception 42 yards up the right sideline for 21-0 just 3:52 before intermission.
Simpson capped a nine-play, 60-yard march with a one-yard QB sneak for TD and 35-0 on the final play of the third quarter. Andrew Ilie was 5-for-5 on extra points. The score instituted running time for the fourth quarter.
Simpson completed 16 of 29 passes for 287 yards as the Eagle offensive line held up against Westhill’s defensive pressure.
PLAYER OF GAME
Trumbull senior wide receiver Kyle Atherton finished with seven receptions for 147 yards including TD catches for 53 and 31 yards.
“This win was important,” Trumbull’s Atherton said. “We keep building the foundation for the future for the football program. Winning keeps our football family strong.”
TRUMBULL 35, WESTHILL 0
TRUMBULL 0 28 7 0—35
WESTHILL 0 0 0 0—0
T—Billy Colbert 6 run (Andrew Ilie kick)
T—Kyle Atherton 53 pass from Riley Simpson (Ilie kick)
T—Ray Leonzi 42 interception return (Ilie kick)
T—Atherton 31 pass from Simpson (Ilie kick)
T—Simpson 1 run (Ilie kick)
Records: Trumbull 3-6, Westhill 1-8