Week 7 football: Holy Cross suffers first loss in second straight battle of unbeatens (updated)

It was a tough Friday and Saturday for local high school football teams – with one exception – in Week 7.

Two area football teams were defeated on Friday, and two more went down on Saturday. The lone local victory was on Friday night.

Here’s what happened:


Ansonia 31, Holy Cross 28: It was another battle of the unbeatens for the Crusaders, but unfortunately, they came up short in this one at Municipal Stadium’s Ray Snyder Sr. Field.

Ansonia went ahead, 31-28, on a David Cassetti touchdown with 6:25 to play in the game. Holy Cross had one final drive deep into Charger territory, but a Machi Ingram interception of Crusader quarterback Drew Caouette cinched the game for the visitors. Ansonia improved to 6-0 (3-0 NVL Division I) while Holy Cross fell to 5-1 (2-1).

This game was as back-and-forth as it gets and was played in front of another big crowd at Snyder Field. There were seven lead changes in a game where neither side led by more than seven points (Holy Cross, 7-0, after a 51-yard touchdown by Tom Ligi).

Ansonia answered Ligi’s opening salvo with a one-yard Cassetti touchdown run. Paul Palmer connected on a 31-yard field goal for a 10-7 Charger lead on the first play of the second quarter. Caouette threw a seven-yard touchdown pass to Marquis Campbell to give the Crusaders a 13-10 lead (the extra point was blocked), which they took into halftime.

Cassetti put Ansonia back on top, 17-13, with a 31-yard touchdown run in the third quarter. Holy Cross’ two ‘C’s, Caouette and Campbell, connected for another touchdown, this time 23 yards. Combine that touchdown with a fluky two-point pass from Caouette to Carsten Donovan via teammate Dylan Gray’s deflection, and the Crusaders had a 21-17 lead with 5:12 left in the third quarter.

The Chargers needed only a little over two minutes to seize the momentum back. Holy Cross fumbled in its end zone, and Ansonia’s Mekhi Henton-Garrett recovered for a touchdown. Paul Palmer’s extra point gave the Chargers a 24-21 lead with three minutes to play in the quarter.

The Crusaders answered early in the fourth quarter on the third touchdown connection between Caouette and Campbell. The 18-yard score, and Kevin Matiz’s PAT, put Holy Cross up, 28-24, with 10:53 to play in the game. Ansonia’s final offensive answer came when Cassetti scored from seven yards out with 6:25 to go. Palmer’s extra point put the Chargers ahead, 31-28.

Holy Cross’ last gasp was picked off by Ingram in the Ansonia end zone on fourth down. The Chargers were stuck at their own 1 after Ingram tried to run it out of the end zone, but the Crusaders jumped offside and gave the visitors the room they needed to take a pair of knees and end the game.

There were plenty of offensive heroes. Caouette completed 16 of 24 passes and 201 yards. Campbell caught nine passes for 102 yards and also had an interception on defense. Ligi wound up with over 100 yards total offense (94 rushing, 22 receiving). Ansonia ran for well over 300 yards, led by Cassetti, Ingram and quarterback Chris Kaminski.

It was an absolute classic, but one that ended in defeat for Holy Cross. The Crusaders play Crosby this Saturday at 10 a.m. at Jimmy Lee Stadium.

St. Paul 36, Derby 12: Brady McManama ran for three one-yard touchdowns to lead the Falcons (3-3) past the winless Raiders at Joe DeFilippo Field in Derby.

Ryan Sapieha ran for an 18-yard touchdown and Mike Barzee scored on an eight-yard run for St. Paul. Ryan Diaz ran for a pair of two-point conversions and Charles Aponte caught a conversion pass. On defense, Barzee recovered a fumble and Landin Boutot recorded an interception.

Woodland 33, Wolcott 6: Anthony Bell’s eight-yard touchdown run got the Eagles to within two scores, but they didn’t get any closer against the Hawks in Beacon Falls.

Wolcott fell to 1-5 while Woodland improved to 5-1.


Gilbert/Northwestern/Housatonic 69, Crosby 42: The Bulldogs had nearly 600 yards of total offense, but fell to .500 (3-3) with the loss to the Yellowjackets (4-2) at Winsted’s Van Why Field.

Jeremiah Febus threw for 353 yards and five touchdowns, according to stats posted by Crosby on MaxPreps.com. Jashua Sanabria (100 yards) and John Herrington (93) each had four catches while Nevon Burke hauled in three receptions for 70 yards. Syere Coleman got all 80 of his yards on a touchdown. Michael Scott carried 12 times for 75 yards while Michail Scott ran nine times for 62 yards.

Northwest United, Wilcox/Kaynor: Brandon Alvarado ran 61 yards for a touchdown for the co-op (3-3) in their loss to the undefeated Workhorses (5-0) at Meriden’s Falcon Field.

Nick Barros made the extra point on Alvarado’s touchdown, and he also connected on a field goal.

Maloney 35, Bristol Central 7: Tre Blair gave the Rams the lead late in the first quarter Saturday against the Spartans with a 12-yard touchdown pass to Nik Salinas.

The 7-0 advantage didn’t last, however, as third-ranked Maloney ran over Central. The Spartans scored early in the second quarter to tie the game, then took the lead late in that same stanza. In the third quarter, Maloney scored twice in a 2:06 span to take a commanding 28-7 lead. The Spartans added a touchdown with just over four minutes remaining in the game for the final touch.

Central fell to 1-5 while Maloney remained undefeated (6-0).


Friday, Oct. 28
Wilcox/Kaynor at Thames River, 6
St. Paul at Woodland, 6
Kennedy at Wolcott, 6:30
Bristol Central
at Middletown, 6:30
Plainville at Bristol Eastern, 6:30
Naugatuck at WCA (Snyder Field), 7
Wilby at Watertown, 7

Saturday, Oct. 29
Holy Cross at Crosby, 10 a.m.

PHOTO CAPTION: Sophomore quarterback Drew Caouette and Holy Cross fought hard against Ansonia, but came up just a little short in a 31-28 loss on Friday night in Waterbury. (Copyright, Sports on CT-69, file)