Football: Trumbull Eagles make most of summer break

Trumbull High’s Reggie Robinson looks for room to run in a 7-on-7 meeting with St. Joseph. — Andy Hutchison photo
Trumbull High’s Reggie Robinson looks for room to run in a 7-on-7 meeting with St. Joseph. — Andy Hutchison photo

Opening kickoff for the regular football season is still a ways off, but it will be here before we know it.

Area high school teams are making the most of their summer break during rigorous workouts and skills training.

The Trumbull High Eagles were among several area teams participating in 7-on-7 summer league game-situation drills at St Joseph High a couple of nights each week during these hot summer nights.

Trumbull players, without helmets or pads, worked on offensive patterns to sharpen their skills and supplement workouts, including weight lifting, and endurance-building activities. Heat and humidity can make things a bit more of a challenge than these drills otherwise would be.

“It’s pretty tough but you’ve just got to take it by quarters. One, two, three, four, just like in a game situation,” said Reggie Robinson, a senior receiver with the Eagles.

These summer sessions serve as team bonding experience as well as an opportunity to refine skills and get into better shape.

“It’s good to get team chemistry and gel before the regular season starts,” Robinson said.

Teams work on plays and do so against rivals — and not-so-familiar opponents — during roughly half hour-long matchups in which they rotate between offense and defense. Then, it’s on to face the next team.

Among the teams competing were host St Joseph and other FCIAC foes, along with non-conference counterparts from South-West Conference schools such as Newtown, Stratford and Notre Dame-Fairfield and Southern Connecticut Conference lineups from the likes of Shelton and Fairfield Prep.

“It’s a great experience. You’re playing a lot of teams, a lot of competition. You see different looks,” said Vinny DiLeo, a junior wideout. “It isn’t easy (the weather), but once you get out there it’s more about football.”

“It’s great to be out here with them. It’s great preparation. It helps us get ready and tuned up for the season,” said Riley Simpson, an Eagle quarterback who participated in the drills. The workouts are in place for athletes to stay sharp and be as close to mid-season form from the onset as possible.

“If you can be more conditioned that will give you a better chance of winning,” DiLeo said.

The Eagles, under first-year coach Marce Petroccio, will get the season started with a Saturday, Sept. 8, visit to Greenwich at 4. The home opener is the next week when Fairfield Ludlowe visits McDougall Stadium for a 7 o’clock start.

Trumbull’s non-conference opponent will be Griswold, on the road, Friday, Nov. 9 at 7.

The regular season concludes with the annual Thanksgiving Day clash with St Joe’s, which the Eagles will host, at 10 am.

“I can’t wait. It’s great, we really want to prove a point this year,” DiLeo said.