The No. 5 seeded St. Joseph Cadets came ready to play in its Class M state quarterfinal football game at No. 4 Wolcott High at Monroe Field on Tuesday.

Coach Joe Della Vecchia’s Cadets defeated the Eagles, 48-21. They will visit No. 1 Valley Regional/Old Lyme, a 30-12 victor over Berlin High, in the semifinals at 6:30 on Monday.

Jaden Shirden ran for four touchdowns, Crey Babineau ran for a score and threw for two more, and Jared Mallozzi had both scoring receptions. Luke Kirby kicked six PATS.

“We had to work hard to prepare for Wolcott,” said Della Vecchia, who has guided the Cadets to four state titles in the past seven years. “We knew this was going to be a tough game. But they key was we had to get our offense going. The last two games our offense really hasn’t been there, and during the week in practice we challenged the kids.”

After Wolcott closed the gap at 28-21 heading into the final quarter, the Cadets sealed the deal with a 20-0 run. Babineau threw a 25-yard TD pass to Mallozzi and Shirden ran for scores from 3- and 1-yard out.

Knowing what was at stake, the Cadets defense made their mark.

Brian Harner set the school record for sacks in a season at 8, and a career with 15, as he made eight tackles, three for loss yardage. Robbie Miller and Ace Luzietti came up with interceptions.