Football: St. Joseph wins big in Class S quarterfinals

Ace Luzietti returned an interception for a touchdown. — Andy Hutchison photo
Ace Luzietti returned an interception for a touchdown. — Andy Hutchison photo

St Joseph High’s football team took care of business early en route to 62-0 triumph over the O’Brien Tech Condors in the Class S state tournament quarterfinals at McDougall Stadium on Tuesday night.

“It’s the state playoffs. We came out, played hard, and did what we have to do, and tried to stay sharp and stay crisp,” Cadet coach Joe Della Vecchia said. “We know we’ve got a tough road ahead of us.”

Second-seeded St. Joseph (10-1) will play host to third-seeded Rocky Hill (11-0) in the semifinals on Sunday at 12:30.

Rocky Hill defeated Valley/Old Lyme, 34-21.

The Cadets jumped out to a 28-0 lead at the end of one quarter of play and went up a commanding 55-0 by halftime. The seventh-seeded Condors had trouble moving the football, frequently punting after three and out possessions.

Della Vecchia felt it was important for his team to jump out to an early lead and not take anything for granted against the 8-2 Condors. “The longer you keep them in a game the tougher it gets,” he said.

The Cadets made it pretty easy on themselves after scoring a pair of TDs before the midpoint of the opening quarter, and shutting the Condors down by containing their single wing offense.

“I thought we did a lot of things well. I think we played hard, we competed the whole time,” Della Vecchia said.

Jaden Shirden had a pair of rushing touchdowns — the first two of the game — as he scored from eight and 14 yards out.

Quarterback David Summers threw five TD passes in the first half.

The Cadets scored their second and third first-quarter touchdowns on their first play from scrimmage following consecutive O’Brien Tech punts.

Summers connected with Jared Mallozzi for 56 and 40 yard scores to cap the opening-stanza outburst; the second of Mallozzi’s scores came on a screen pass.

In the second quarter, it was more of the same on offense, with the defense getting into the scoring act.

Summers hit Philip Pasmeg for a 25-yard score.

Ace Luzietti, who had some strong punt returns, intercepted a pass and returned it 25 yards to paydirt as the Cadets opened up a 42-0 cushion.

On the next St Joe’s drive, Summers, despite multiple would-be tacklers on him, managed a short pass to Pasmeg to move the chains. That set up a 5-yard TD pass to Jess Bike.

The Cadets missed the extra point, about the only thing to go O’Brien Tech’s way all night long.

St Joe’s struck again as Summers threw to Will Diamantis for a 17-yard score with just 11 seconds left in the half.

The only second-half scoring came on a 4-yard James Coughlin run.

Backup players, including quarterback Austin Jose, saw quality playing time in the third and fourth quarters.