FCIAC

Rainy Days: FCIAC Football Week Four Outlook

Three FCIAC football teams — Darien, New Canaan and Staples — remain undefeated at 3-0 as the fall season heads into a rainy week four schedule on Friday.

Staples and New Canaan will both be on the road, with the Wreckers at Warde at 7 p.m., Friday, and the Rams at Westhill at 2:30 p.m, Saturday. Darien, meanwhile, will go out of conference for a contest against Norwich Free Academy at 2 p.m., Saturday, at DHS.

The entire FCIAC will have a bye next weekend, with Staples taking on NFA in the only game involving a league team.

Here’s a rundown of this weekend’s games. The forecast calls for steady rain for much of the next two days.

Friday, Sept. 30

 

Central (0-2) at Greenwich (2-1), 6 p.m.

Last Saturday, John Marinelli’s Cardinals played Darien as tough as anybody has the past two seasons, eventually falling 42-35. The Cards are moving in the right direction and it’ll be difficult for the 0-2 Hilltoppers to slow Greenwich’s roll.

Wilton (2-1) at Ludlowe (0-3), 7 p.m.

The HAN Network’s football fan vote game of the week will feature two teams looking to right the ship after losses last weekend. The Wilton Warriors were steamrolled by Staples 42-6, while the Ludlowe Falcons fell to Ridgefield 49-13. The Falcons get the home game in this one, but will need a better showing from a defense which has allowed more than 40 points in each of the first three games.

Trinity (1-2) at Trumbull (2-1), 7 p.m.

This game may be the best match-up in the league this week. Both teams are coming off big wins: Trinity opened Gaglio Field with a 52-28 win over Norwalk, while Trumbull smoked Westhill, 49-19. Two of the league’s hottest offensive players will be featured in Trinity RB Jonmichael Bivona and Trumbull quarterback James McElroy. Bivona, an HAN/FCIAC Athlete of the Week nominee, rushed for 316 yards and four touchdowns on 15 carries last week, while McElroy has thrown for 487 yards and six touchdowns during the past two games.

Ridgefield (2-1) at Norwalk (2-1), 7 p.m.

Both of these teams would receive a big boost in their state playoff chances with a win in this game. Ridgefield rebounded from a loss to New Canaan and defeated Ludlowe in week three. Tigers quarterback Drew Fowler is still sidelined with an injury, but Greg Gatto delivered last week, throwing for 260 yards and four touchdowns. Norwalk, which suffered its first loss of the season last week, will be looking to regain the form it showed while beating Warde and Ludlowe in its first two games.

St. Joseph (2-1) at Danbury (0-3), 7 p.m.

St. Joseph QB Cory Babineau and WR Jared Mallozzi were in high gear during last week’s win over Brien McMahon, as the pair hooked up for four touchdown passes. Mallozzi, an HAN Athlete of the Week nominee, had eight catches for 130 yards and has found the end zone nine times this year. By contrast, Danbury has scored just four touchdowns through three games and will try to get its first win against the hot Cadets.

Stamford (2-1) at McMahon (0-3), 7 p.m.

Stamford broke away late while beating Warde 27-7 last Friday, and gets a winless Brien McMahon team this week. The Senators have found the end zone just four times in three games, but have faced teams with a combined record of 7-2.

Staples (3-0) at Warde (0-3), 7 p.m.

The Wreckers have been running amok through the league, with QB Ethan Burger and RB Harris Levi delivering with their legs. It’s been the defense, however, which has been the most impressive, as Staples has surrendered just 26 points in three games. The Mustangs, meanwhile, lost to Wilton in overtime in week one, and have struggled since. Getting on track against the Wreckers is a tall order.

Saturday, Oct. 1

NFA (1-1) at Darien (3-0), 2 p.m.

The Blue Wave just keeps rolling along, albeit with a strong challenge from the Greenwich Cardinals last week. Darien scored a late touchdown to win, 42-35, in its homecoming game and stretched its winning streak to 15 games over the past two seasons. The Wave also retained the state’s No. 1 ranking. NFA was routed by Xavier 36-0 in its opener, and then did the routing itself with a 42-7 win over Fitch last week. This is the first of two in a row against FCIAC teams for NFA, which hosts Staples on Oct. 8

New Canaan (3-0) at Westhill (1-2), 2:30 p.m.

The Rain Bowl.

Westhill has been all over the board this season. A heartbreaking loss on a late TD to Greenwich in week one was followed by a blowout win over Central in week two. Then last week, the Vikes were crushed by the Trumbull Eagles, 49-19. New Canaan was sluggish in week one, but has since figured it out, scoring 91 points in wins over Ridgefield and Central in the past two games. Ryan O’Connell has been as good as advertised, with 282 rushing yards, 161 receiving yards, and five touchdowns on offense, and 12 tackles and a pick on defense.

Quarterback John McElroy and the Trumbull Eagles will host the Trinity Catholic Crusaders in their week four game tonight at 7 p.m. — Dave Stewart/HAN Network photo