Youth football: Wilton teams begin season

Wilton Youth Football teams had the following results from Sept. 3-4:

Fifth grade

Darien Blue 14, Wilton White 0
The Wilton Warriors opened their season with a hard-fought game on the road against Darien White.

The Warriors began the first quarter with a drive deep into Darien territory led by the strong running of Patrick Heffernan, Owen Theoharides, and Cole Stevenson. The big play of the drive was a 30-yard reverse to Levi Kaplan. The offensive line opened up running lanes all game thanks to the solid blocking of Will Fischer, Tyler Giannantoni and Aidan Shaw. Although the Darien defense was stout, the Warrior defense was similarly up for the challenge thanks to the strong tackling of Jason Costa, Griffin Kovach, Eli Meltzer, Peter Reyes, Colin O’Neill, and Francesco Tomas. Quin Silva also had a key fumble recovery for the Wilton defense.

The Warriors’ passing game was in mid-season form with Ryan Smith completing passes to Conner Flanagan and Charlie Caporrino.

Sixth grade

Wilton White 22, Aspetuck 6
Wilton White won its season opener on the road with an impressive 22-6 victory over the Aspetuck Wildcats.

Wilton scored first on its opening drive with a 38-yard touchdown run by halfback Ryan Preisano to make it 6-0. The impressive running of fullback Wil Sullivan, who had a huge 34-yard run, set up the touchdown.

The tough Warrior defense led by defensive tackle Jackson Duncan sacked the Aspetuck quarterback in the end zone for a safety, making the score 8-0.

Tommy McKiernan had 68 yards rushing on the day.

In the second quarter, quarterback George Hahn threw a 25-yard pass to wide receiver Zach Krawitz, who was brought down at the three-yard line. Wilton pounded the ball in on a three-yard run by Wil Sullivan, and Michael Wall kicked the first of his two PATs, making the score 15-0.

The offensive line led by Jake Enman, Carter Galante, Alexander Reyes, Michael Byrnes, Connor Sweeney, Merrick Snyder and tight end William McCormack were outstanding holding their blocks and opening huge holes. Wingback Michael Colavecchio was tremendous blocking the end all game.

Wilton scored again in the fourth quarter on a one-yard sneak by George Hahn, making the score 22-0.

Defensively, the line pressured the Aspetuck backfield all game led by guards Lorcan Garcia, Jackson Kreter and Christian Stella, who all had big tackles. Safety Michael Wall was key in stopping the passing attack. Defensive end Matthew Dooley, and outside linebackers Tommy McKiernan and Wil McCormack, made some big tackles to stop any Aspetuck drives. The Warrior defense was outstanding on third downs led by Andrei Schroeder. The defense gave up a late fourth-quarter touchdown but stopped the extra point attempt.

The Warriors host Darien Blue on Saturday night at 6:30 at Fujitani Field.
Wilton Blue 27, Darien Blue 12
In the first football game played on Wilton’s new turf field, Wilton Blue started its 2016 season with a solid performance. The game started with Darien scoring on its first two series with amazing runs by Darien’s super-quick running back. After settling down and making several adjustments on defense, Wilton was able to shut down Darien’s offense for the remainder of the game.

Defensive end Nicholas Walden, and linebackers Griffin Turner and Xander Petrides and cornerbacks Charlie Guglielmo and Quinn Stengrim, had excellent games. On the defensive line, first-year player Bobby DiPalma was able to control the line of scrimmage while Jamie Cristini was a beast with multiple sacks.

The defense also scored a touchdown on a 30-yard strip by Andrew Kress.

Wilton’s offense, although a little inconsistent, was able to score three touchdowns through long runs by Spencer Liston, Charlie Guglielmo and Christopher Capone and power running by Quinn Stengrim, Xander Petrides and Andrew Acosta-Rua.

Seventh grade

New Canaan Red 14, Wilton White 7
Wilton White lost a heartbreaker at New Canaan on Saturday, 14-7. The Warriors fell behind 6-0 late in the second quarter but stopped New Canaan on the extra point when Eli Ackerman, Wade Steffens and William Ryan stonewalled the New Canaan quarterback at the goal line.

Wilton came storming back on the ensuing possession behind two long passes from quarterback Grant Masterson. He hit Max Silva for 30 yards and then audibled to hit Ackerman for a 34-yard touchdown. Masterson kicked the extra point. Offensive lineman Kieran O’Neill, Cole Boniface, Andrew Pellicano, Jimmy Luce and Chris McCann provided excellent protection on the two pivotal plays.

The second half was a battle of defenses as Wilton’s defense held firm behind linebackers Joe deGrasse, Masterson and Silva, and excellent end play by Jimmy Luce. Tyler Hough, Ryan Farrar, Charlie Fischer, Brennan MacGregor, Ben Pond, Pellicano and O’Neill anchored the defensive line. The Wilton offense was stymied in the second half, despite solid blocking by receivers Jackson Luther and Chris Calderone. Wilton gave up their 7-6 lead with 1:32 to go in the game, on a fourth-and-nine play, when the New Canaan quarterback evaded pressure and took it in for the score and ensuing extra point.

Eighth grade

Wilton White 30, Aspetuck 8
Wilton White opened the season at Aspetuck on Sunday afternoon. Despite some early-season jitters that led to a Wilton fumble on its first possession and an Aspetuck touchdown on the ensuing drive, the Warriors looked solid.

After falling behind 8-0, the Wilton offense buckled down and sustained an impressive drive almost entirely on the ground, with running back Sean Sullivan doing the lion’s share of the work behind offensive guards Michael Coffey and Evan Kauh, offensive tackles Matt Gulbin and Andre Long, and center Michael Burton. Sullivan finished the drive on a nice five-yard run up the middle for a touchdown.

That drive seemed to wake the Warriors up as the defense stiffened, led by tackles for losses by Gulbin and Jimmy McKiernan. McKiernan then caught a pass for a key first down on offense as Wilton’s air attack began in earnest. Quarterback John Stanley found Trevor Martines for a 25-yard strike down the sideline that set up a nice touchdown run by Mack Kepner.

Wilton’s defense took over for good right before the half with Ryan Witty and Max Greenberg making key stops on the line and Martines intercepting the ball with less than a minute in the half. On offense, the Stanley-to-Martines connection struck gold for a 35-yard bomb good for another touchdown. Kicker Ryan vanHeyst made all three extra points in the half to make the score 24-8.

The second half opened with more of the same with Wilton’s defense forcing Aspetuck’s offense into a three and out after Coffey had a tackle for loss and joined Witty for another stop at the line of scrimmage. On offense, Stanley found receiver Mattias Onnerud for a nice completion to get the drive going. Then Kepner found daylight again, barreling over defenders for an impressive 33-yard touchdown run.

With the score 30-8, Wilton relied on strong defensive line play the rest of the way by Long, Kauh, Quinn O’Connor and EJ Fasano, who forced a fumble, along with Will Rath patrolling the secondary. Nolan Graham and Ryan vanHeyst took over the running back duties and ground out the remaining time in the game.

Darien Blue is up next for the Wilton White Warriors.
Wilton Blue 21, Darien White 18
Coming up with big plays when it needed them, Wilton Blue squeaked by Darien White 21-18 on opening day of the FCFL season on Saturday at Darien High School.

Taking the ball first and operating against a Warrior defense missing four key players — Wooder Thoby, Robert Rios, Matt Goldstein and Bradley Barker — Darien embarked on a sustained drive against the Wilton defense. With first down at the Warrior 12, the defense stiffened with tackles by Kiel Polito for no gain and Jack Carroll for a loss of three, forcing Darien to throw. A furious pass rush by Ryan MacDougall and excellent coverage by Max Mannino caused Darien's fourth-down pass to fall incomplete, ending a 16-play drive that consumed the entire first quarter, giving the Wilton offense the ball at its own 15.

After two rushes for short yardage, Everett Andersen’s quick out pass to MacDougall was good for 22 yards to the Darien 40. Rolling left on the next play, Andersen hit a streaking McDougall in stride for a 30-yard gain. Two bruising runs by Jermaine Vincent and a diving reception by Nick Fahey took the Warriors to the Blue Wave 12. Two plays later, behind the great blocking of Kyle Jordan, Cristian Theoharides, Trey Dexter, Ryan Rogg, Carroll and Brian Cipri, Vincent dove in from the one-yard line. MacDougall’s kick put the Warriors up 7-0

Darien again went on a long drive but time expired in the half with Wilton up 7-0.

Wasting no time, MacDougall took a handoff from Andersen on a jet sweep on the first play of the second half and rumbled 70 yards for a touchdown to put the Warriors up 14-0. Darien struck back twice quickly to narrow the score to 14-12 early in the fourth quarter.

On the first play of Wilton's next possession, Vincent busted through a gaping hole created by Cipri, Dexter and Carroll and raced 46 yards to the Darien 24, but the drive stalled, leaving the Warriors with fourth and long at the 24. Needing a big play, Wilton perfectly executed a screen pass, with Andersen hitting Vincent for a 24-yard touchdown and an insurmountable 21-12 lead.

Darien scored a late touchdown to make the final 21-18.