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Monday, December 3, 2012

Semifinals Recap

No. 1 Hand cruises past Masuk into Class L final

WEST HAVEN — It has been one year since the Hand football team defeated Masuk in the Class L state semifinals, snapping Masuk’s 24-game winning streak.

Knowing the Panthers would like nothing more than to return the favor and also end Hand’s 24-game win streak, Hand quickly sent a message.

Quarterback Brendan Bilcheck hit Caleb Ewald with a 74-yard touchdown pass on the game’s first play and Hand never slowed down in a 42-23 victory over Masuk in this year’s Class L semifinals at Ken Strong Stadium Sunday evening.

PHOTOS: Hand tops Masuk

Hand (12-0), the top-ranked team in the Register Top 10 poll and the No. 1 seed in Class L, will play No. 2 Windsor in the championship game at Rentschler Field Friday or Saturday at a time and day to be determined. The win, Hand’s 25th in a row, also marked the 200th victory for coach Steve Filippone at Hand.


Arkeel Newsome sets career TD record as Ansonia downs Hyde

MIDDLETOWN — Arkeel Newsome made sure the state record for career rushing touchdowns stayed in the proud Ansonia program. In the process, the junior running back helped lead the Chargers to yet another state championship game appearance.

Newsome rushed 15 times for 207 yards and four touchdowns as top-seeded Ansonia dismantled No. 5 Hyde 41-13 Sunday in the Class S state semifinals at Rosek-Skubel Stadium.

Ansonia (13-0), which has won 27 straight games, will face No. 3 North Branford for the title either Friday or Saturday at Rentschler Field. The Chargers are seeking their CIAC-best 18th title.

On the first play of the third quarter, Newsome scampered 69 yards for a touchdown, his third of the game, and the 115th of his career, breaking the record previously held by former Ansonia standout Alex Thomas.

“It means a lot,” Newsome said. “He was a good back. For me to break that, I think it’s awesome and a great accomplishment.”

PHOTOS: Ansonia triumphs over Hyde


Hillhouse routs Montville to reach title game

MIDDLETOWN — Hillhouse expected to have a speed advantage entering its Class M state semifinal contest against Montville, and it turned out the Academics had too many weapons, namely Harold Cooper and Je’Vaughn Moore.

That duo were each part of three touchdowns for fourth-seeded Hillhouse in a 48-26 victory over No. 8 Montville at Rosek-Skubel Stadium. The Academics (10-2) advanced to the championship game and will face No. 2 Berlin either Friday or Saturday.

Cooper rushed 12 times for 146 yards and two touchdowns and also caught a touchdown pass from Moore to lead Hillhouse to its second final in three years. The Academics won this class in 2010.

“As a whole, we knew our speed was going to be very, very important,” said Cooper, a junior. “We knew coming into this game that they were a little bit bigger, a little bit stronger, so our coaches told us ‘hey, we just got to use our speed’ and that’s what we did.”


North Branford back in championship game
for first time since 2001 after win over Woodland

MERIDEN — For the first time since 2001, North Branford will play for a state football championship.

The unbeaten Thunderbirds (12-0) took advantage of four Woodland fumbles in the first half and five in the game to knock off the Hawks 62-27 at Falcon Field in a CIAC Class S semifinal game on Sunday.

Third-seeded North Branford will play top-seeded Ansonia (13-0) for the title at Rentschler Field in East Hartford either Friday night or Saturday. Woodland finished 8-4.

PHOTOS: North Branford runs past Woodland


Xavier beats Glastonbury to reach Class LL final
for third straight year

CHESHIRE — For a brief moment late Sunday afternoon, Tim Boyle let a smile creep across his face.

Despite all sorts of pressure, question marks and injuries — even an unfamiliar regular-season loss — his Falcons were headed back to the state finals.

“It’s tremendous,” the senior quarterback grinned. “We’re very blessed.”

Boyle threw a pair of touchdown passes, DeAngelo Berry rushed for two more and the third-seeded Falcons punched their ticket to the Class LL state football championship game for the third straight year in a 30-13 win against No. 7 Glastonbury in the semifinals at Cheshire High’s Alumni Field.


SUNDAY'S CIAC FOOTBALL ROUNDUP: NFA upsets second-ranked Staples

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