Bowen Field, New HavenRecords:
No. 8 Hillhouse
Prep (2-2)Points scored: Hillhouse
, 151; Fairfield
Prep, 82.Points against: Hillhouse
, 36; Fairfield
Since defeating New Jersey power Hoboken
in the season-opener, Hillhouse
has virtually cruised
past Southern Connecticut Conference opponents, winning four league games by an average of 23 points. But Fairfield
Prep should be the Academics' toughest test yet. While the Jesuits' are just 2-2, the Catholic school boys are much better, stronger and more physical than the record indicates.
"They're big and they're physical," Hillhouse
coach Tom Dyer said about Prep. "Their two running backs are bruisers
. Their quarterback is very good, and very disciplined, and up front they are very strong in the offensive and defensive lines. We have our work cut out for us."
Prep running backs are senior Peter Gruppo
(352 yards, four touchdowns) and senior Connor Kelly, a fullback, who's scored three times on the ground. The quarterback is senior Brendan Nizolek
(43 of 82, 574 yards).
The Jesuits have struggled at times to score but their defense has kept them in every game.
"Regardless of them being 2-2," Hillhouse
quarterback Bernard Risco
said, "they're still fundamentally sound. It's a good team. They're well-coached."Hillhouse
is primarily a running team, but Risco
has an accurate arm when called upon. He's rushed for close to 400 yards and four touchdowns. Senior Brandyn Wright has gained 235 yards and three scores, and senior fullback Leon Davis has rushed for a team-leading 243 yards.
"The offense we run is kind of a run-first offense," Dyer said. "It's tough sometimes for high school kids to understand that it's not about stats. It's sometimes tough but it's our job as a coach to make the kids understand that we're doing this for the betterment of the team. Stats's
don't make you a great player. Bernard's really bought into that."
Senior Marvin McClendon
has also contributed in the backfield as well as sophomore Chris Turner. Dyer says Davis "gets it started with the triple-option", while Turner "shows a lot of promise but is still learning our system."
is allowing just over seven points per contest.
Senior defensive ends Andrew Lyde
Wilkins, who has recorded 10 sacks, have been the standouts.
"These guys have been doing a great job of controlling the line of scrimmage," Dyer said. "When teams drop back to pass they're all over the quarterback. When you're able to pressure the QB it does wonders. That's why (senior defensive back) Jeremy Moore has six interceptions."
Also contributing on defense have been Junior linebacker Derrick Chin, senior lineman Brandon Gardner, junior lineman Reno Dunkley
, senior lineman Marquis Brown and senior lineman Eric Johnson.