Saturday, November 18, 2006

Quick Football Update (Sports and Football)

Friday - The Greenwich Cardinals won the FCIAC Championship at Boyle Stadium in Stamford, beating New Canaan 28-0. That score doesn't tell the story, as it was much closer initially before the Cards ran away with it in the second half. Bobby Sullivan won the games MVP award, as a result of his FCIAC Championship Game record 95-yard touchdown run that changed the feeling of the game. For head coach Rich Albonizio, it was win number 200 in his career.

On the radio, we had a very solid call. I have to admit that I was jumping out of my shoes waiting to get on the air but once we did, I thought we were sharp. A special tip of the hat goes to Nick Angotto, who handled all of the post-game interviews with his former teammates and coach. As a broadcast rookie, Nick gets better everyday and continues to learn some of the tough lessons of broadcasting. I was extremely happy for him, and extremely proud.

I also got to meet Jason Intrieri for the first time, from WWPT in Westport. I'm excited to say that I will be on Jason's TV show, "Coaches Corner", next week. You can see the show if you live in Westport, CT. Tim Parry and Staples coach Marce Petroccio will round out the guest list.

Today (Saturday) - The Brunswick Bruins played the Belmont Hill Hillies for the second year in a row in the NEPSAC Championship. The Bruins, winners of 38 in a row, had all they could do to stay in the game as Hillies stars Daniel Williams and Corey Gatewood ran for approximately 300 yards combined. The Hillies held an 18-7 halftime lead and took a 26-7 lead into the fourth quarter. On the air, we were beginning to write the Bruins epitaph. However not so fast, as they say. The Bruins scored twice, on a one-yard run by Phil Cutler, and a 14-yard pass from Kevin Decker to Kevin Royal to cut the deficit to 26-20. The Bruins got the ball back with less than two minutes to play and actually got inside the Hillies 40, and appeared to be getting closer when an illegal motion penalty backed them up. That was a dagger, as the B's could not recover. Decker couldn't find an open receiver on fourth and 15, tried to scramble and came up well short of the first down. The Hillies ran out the clock on a 26-20 championship win. Congratulations to both teams on a good game, and best wishes to a classy Bruin team, led by Coach Sean Brennan and his two captains - Kevin Decker and Tyler MacFarlane.

A couple of side notes - Coach Brennan was interviewed by Nick following the loss, and misunderstood a question, in which Nick was trying to ask about his disappointment in losing a special group of players to graduation. Coach Brennan thought Nick was asking about his disappointment WITH the players. Big difference. That was not Nick's intention, and if an air clearing is necessary with Coach Brennan, then I will do so myself. Just a misunderstanding.

The other thing that stuck in my craw today was the behavior of a parent. We've seen parents play very bad active roles in youth sports, and I saw it personally today. I won't name names, but one person, who's known for being ultra-enthusiastic, actually got in the face of an official late in the game on a sideline pass that was ruled out of bounds - correctly. I've been known to criticize officials, especially when they blow it in crunch time. This was the correct call, and no parent, under ANY circumstances, belongs on the sideline during a game. Beyond that, not parent under ANY circumstances should be saying anything to an official. The official, fortunately, chose to ignore this person, though he would have been in the right if he had decided to throw a flag for unsportsmanlike conduct, or simply had the parent ejected from the facility.

One last thing - the press box facility at Loomis Chaffee, the site of the game, was one of the most wicked things I've gone to. Try 30 feet in the air (give or take), in a tower that consisted of a wooden box on top of a steel frame. It was safe, to b e sure, but to get there you had to climb a steel ladder attached to the side of it - a straight climb both up and down. If not for the encouragement of Ricky Fritsch, I don't think we would have worked up there. We made it happen and it was a good view.

Onto tomorrow, where we'll cover the "innocence" of youth football in the GYFL Championships at Cardinal Stadium in Greenwich. We start at 11:00.

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