- COACH — ROB FLEETING (10th year, 88-14)
- CONFERENCE — CCC Division II East
- PLAYOFF CLASS — L (592 boys enrollment)
- HOME — Jack O’Brien Stadium, Windsor
- 2017 RECORD — 10-2, lost to Hand in Class L semifinals
- 2018 OPENER — Sept. 7 at Maloney, 6:30 p.m.
- TEAM WEBSITE — MaxPreps | TWITTER — @WHSFootballCT
- DOHNJE CASSANOVA, OL/DL (6-0, 270)
- JOSH WEINER, OL/DL (6-0, 275)
- KYLE ORZACHOWSKI, OL/DL (6-4, 270)
- NATE FORREST, Sr. OL/DL (6-1, 215)
- KOBE FOSTER, LB (6-1, 220)
- SHAUN HUNTER, RB/LB (5-9, 185)
- DANIEL ELIOTT, RB/LB (5-9, 185)
- JULIAN JACKSON, QB (6-0, 189)
- GABRIEL BRYAN, Sr. WR/DB (6-0, 164)
- KENNETH GORDON, Sr. WR/DB (6-0)
- TISHAY JOHNSON, Jr. WR/DB (6-1)
- TORAYLE DALE, Jr. TE/OLB (6-1, 200)
LB Joe Russell (All-State, SCSU); LB Shayne Manson (First-team All-State, CCSU); WR Jerry Woodard (First team All-State); DE Omega Cobb (All-State, WestConn); WR LJ Walcott; RB Tomasz Johnson.
Windsor last season did what it always does under coach Rob Fleeting, which is to say the Warriors established themselves early as the team to beat in the CCC, won a majority of their games and, once again, qualified for the state playoffs.
Fleeting has excelled in this formula during his 10 years as head coach and few can match his exceptional winning percentage (.862). Every year, it seems, the program develops top college talent. Since Fleeting took over, it has played in three state championship games and has reached the playoffs in six of the last seven years.
But they don’t play just to win games at Windsor. They play for titles. And, despite boasting some high-powered squads over the years, Fleeting and the Warriors are looking to add another state championship trophy to go with the Class L-Small Championship in 2015.
Last season, the Warriors reached the Class L semifinals, but were run off the Surf Club turf by eventual champion Hand.
Hand will likely await Windsor again, but in the meantime Fleeting has been busy retooling his club for another run.
If past seasons are any indication, it figures to be a short rebuilding process. Six starters return on offense — including four on the offensive line — and another five are back on the defense, giving Windsor a solid foundation.
Though the Warriors graduated 1,500-yard rusher Tomasz Johnson and 1,000-yard receiver LJ Walcott, quarterback Julian Jackson is back behind center after throwing for 2,060 yards and 20 touchdowns against just five picks last year.
Shaun Hunter and Daniel Elliott will take over as the primary ballcarriers after backing up Johnson last season. Hunter was second on the team with 456 yards and four touchdowns as a junior. The Warriors have less experience returning at receiver, but Fleeting said seniors Gabriel Bryan and Kenneth Gordon are “attracting Division I attention.” Gordon has already announced an offer from Central Connecticut.
But the key, of course, is the offensive line which is anchored by a roster sturdy seniors, notably All-CCC and All-State pick Dohnje Cassanova (6-0, 270). He lines up alongside seniors John Weiner (6-0, 275), Nate Forrest (6-1, 215) and Kyle Orzachowski (6-4, 270). The Warriors should have no trouble moving the ball.
Defense took a hit with the graduation of four all-staters in JoJo Russell, Shayne Manson (11 sacks), Jerry Woodard (eight interceptions) and the aptly named Omega Cobb (eight sacks) at defensive end.
Kobe Foster, second on the team in tackles, takes over as the primary stopper at linebacker and Cassanova will lead the charge up front after posting 45 tackles (8 for a loss) and 5 1/2 sacks last season.
Windsor opens with a road game at Maloney in a matchup of two strong lines. The Warriors bookended Maloney’s season with a victory in the opener and in the Class L quarterfinals last year.
Overall, Windsor’s schedule is undaunting save for a three-game road stretch near midseason vs. Platt, E.O. Smith and a non-conference game vs. Norwich Free Academy. An intriguing game is Oct. 26 at home vs. Wethersfield. Middletown, which finally bit Windsor last year, 24-7, looms in the season finale.
- Sept. 7 — at Maloney,* 6:30 p.m.
- Sept. 14 — BRISTOL CENTRAL,* 7 p.m.
- Sept. 21 — FARMINGTON,** 7 p.m.
- Sept. 28 — at Platt,* 6:30 p.m.
- Oct. 12 — at E.O. Smith,** 6 p.m.
- Oct. 19 — at Norwich Free Academy, 6:30 p.m.
- Oct. 26 — WETHERSFIELD,* 7 p.m.
- Nov. 3 — at Hartford Public,** 1 p.m.
- Nov. 9 — HALL,* 7 p.m.
- Nov. 21 — at Middletown,** 6:30 p.m.
Home games in CAPS