NORWALK — It was a hard battle on a number of fronts but the New Canaan High School football team earned a 32-12 triumph over Norwalk Friday night at Sam Testa Field.
Norwalk High (4-4 overall, 3-4 FCIAC) gave New Canaan a hard time over the 48 minutes of action.
“Give Norwalk credit. They gave us all we could handle,” New Canaan coach Lou Marinelli. “It was a tough physical game. My hat is off to Norwalk. The Bears are a good team.”
New Canaan (5-2, 4-2 FCIAC) took control by scoring 23 points in the second quarter to build a 25-6 halftime edge.
NORWALK HURT BY MISCUES
On an evening where the wind made its presence felt, Norwalk had to make due in the running game as its leading rusher Jakari Walker was injured midway in the second quarter and did not return.
Quarterback Kyle Gordon was the Bears’ leading runner amassing 68 yards on 10 carries with 61 yards coming in the second half.
Norwalk also hurt itself with a number of bad snaps on punts as well as hitting double digits in penalties.
“It’s a tough loss to swallow,” Norwalk coach Sean Ireland said. “We stood toe-to-toe with New Canaan. Give them credit for the win. But we know that the contest was closer than the final score indicated. We have eight guys playing both offense and defense. But our kids kept fighting. They gave good effort.”
NEW CANAAN’S BIG PLAY ATTACK
New Canaan quarterback Drew Pyne completed 13 of 28 passes in the intense wind conditions. With 175 yards passing, Pyne went over the 4,000-yard passing mark for his career.
“I’ve never played in tough wind conditions like this,” Pyne said. “I think there were about four times where the wind stopped us from completing a touchdown pass. The 4,000 yards is a nice milestone. But it means I have great coaches, a great offensive line and great receivers to work with.”
Pyne had a 66-yard TD connection to Griffin Arnone, a 14-yard scoring strike to Patrick Metzger and a 2-yard TD pass to Quintin O’Connell. JR Moore added a 10-yard scoring run with 2:06 to go.
New Canaan’s defense sacked Gordon twice in each half. The Rams had an interception, a fumble recovery and forced a first quarter safety.
Gordon completed 16 of 27 passes for less than 100 yards. The Rams’ pressure kept him scrambling out of the pocket most of the second half.
New Canaan stopped Norwealk on downs at the NC 26 with 7:00 to go to settle the issue.
“We were a little shocked early at Norwalk’s response. But we rose to the challenge,” New Canaan coach Marinelli said. “All year long our defense has been stout. We’re getting better but we are still young in spots. It’s still a work in progress. But we still have a lot left to play for this season.”
NEW CANAAN 32, NORWALK 12
NEW CANAAN 2 23 0 7—32
NORWALK 0 6 6 0—12
NC—Grant Morse 21 field goal.
NWK—Ishwa Ertzminger 1 run (kick failed)
NC—Griffin Arnone 66 pass Drew Pyne (kick failed)
NC—Quintin O’Connell 2 pass Pyne (Morse kick)
NC—Patrick Metzger 14 pass Pyne (Morse kick)
NWK—Jalen Elliott 11 pass Kyle Gordon (kick failed)
NC—JR Moore 10 run (Morse kick)
Records: New Canaan 6-2, 5-2 FCIAC; Norwalk 4-4, 3-4 FCIAC.