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Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Ansonia's McKnight leading the charge under center

Ansonia sophomore Jai'Quan McKnight was expected to be the second option in the backfield behind Arkeel Newsome this season.

But when Tyler Lester broke his leg over the summer,  McKnight was thrust into the starting quarterback position. Through two games,  McKnight has responded. McKnight has completed 12-of-17 passes for 356 yards and five touchdowns. He's also rushed for two more scores.

"He's been great," Ansonia coach Tom Brockett said. "He's so coachable, which makes a big difference. He's night and day from where he was from even when we came out here the first day in the fall. We didn't lose Tyler until the summer, so right through the spring Tyler was getting the majority of the reps as the quarterback. He (McKnight) is a lot further ahead from what we thought he would be."

McKnight says there was an adjustment period, but it didn't take very long for him to adapt to his new role.

"It was kind of hard in the beginning just getting to know my receivers and how they run their routes," McKnight said. "But everything is about timing. We go out here before practice and get our timing together. I know my receivers, and they know me, like the back of my hand."

McKnight's top target is senior Andrew Matos, who has caught nine passes, including three touchdowns.

"Jai'Quan, he's doing well," Matos said. "He makes the right reads. I can't ask for a better quarterback right now. He's doing great."

Tight end Raeshaun Finney has also contributed.

"Andrew has speed and Finney has the height," McKnight said. "Both are big men; both are physical. If I put the ball anywhere close to them, I know they're going to go up and get it."

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