SHELTON >> Before thunderstorms halted play, Shelton was sending a clear warning: the Gaels will be a formidable opponent.
Shelton was leading Trumbull 49-0 at halftime before the game was stopped Thursday due to inclement weather.
Friday they completed the rout of the Eagles with Trumbull adding 20 points to complete the scoring in a 57-20 Shelton victory.
But the game was unofficially over Thursday night.
The Trumbull defense had difficulty stopping the Gaels duo of junior quarterback Mark Piccirillo and senior running back Jason Thompson. Piccirillo rushed 13 times for 115 yards and three touchdowns and he also completed 4 of 6 passes for 83 yards and two scores.
Thompson, meanwhile, added 11 carries for 138 yards and one touchdown. “We have weapons,” Shelton coach Jeff Roy said. “We’re able to run the ball with those two kids (Piccirillo and Thompson) in the backfield and, because we have a running quarterback, it gives the defense something else they have to defend.”
Thompson scored on a 5-yard touchdown run, and then Piccirillo connected with 6-foot-3, 210 pound senior Kyle Drost on a 29-yard touchdown pass to give Shelton a 14-0 lead after one quarter.
“Drost is a big-time target,” Roy said. “Teams are going to start to double team him but you can’t double team him because then you have (Michael) Pingree and (Kevin) Robinson and all the other kids, who are pretty good receivers, too. We’re going to spread it around. We’re going to be difficult to defend.”
Piccirillo scored on touchdown runs of 9, 51 and 8 yards in the second quarter, and he also found Thompson on a 31-yard touchdown strike. Senior Chris Pawlowski then returned an interception 32 yards for Shelton’s final score.
The Gaels, though, took a knee on the conversion attempt to prevent them from leading by 50 points. CIAC rules state that a head coach is subject to a one-game suspension if the team wins by more than 50 points. All games ending by more than a 50-point margin are subject to a review of sportsmanship.
Troy Vasilescu and Edward Deptula also made interceptions for the Gaels. Roy was not expecting such a one-sided affair, but knew his team was well-prepared.
“Our kids are really working hard,” Roy said. “This is the best preseason we’ve every had. You couldn’t predict a 49-0 score, but I knew our kids we’re going to come out ready to play.”