HIGGANUM >> Haddam-Killingworth junior quarterback Alex Segaline capped his big night with a 54-yard interception return for a touchdown in the fourth quarter as the Cougars rolled to a 44-18 Pequot Conference victory against Lewis Mills Thursday at H-K.
Segaline also completed 7 of 11 passes for 152 yards with three touchdowns, including an 80-yard bomb to senior Trevor Mann that changed the game’s momentum late in the first quarter.
“Alex did an awesome job, especially when he picks the ball off,” Haddam-Killingworth coach Mike Baklik said. “He’s got a bunch of targets out there and its fun to watch. Everyone else is following his lead.”
Cougars junior running back Noah Vinci scored three touchdowns, while senior Christos Lavelle gained 95 yards on 18 carries as H-K improved to 2-3.
“We picked up the effort in practice this week and it showed on the field,” Baklik said. “We’re starting to play together as a team. The offense got going tonight. They haven’t put up that many points in a while.”
Lewis Mills junior running back Mike Ciccarelli led all rushers with 118 yards on 19 carries with one touchdown. Senior Collin Kennedy had 69 yards on eight attempts, while junior quarterback Trevor Baker completed 8 of 22 passes for 144 yards and two touchdowns.
The Spartans (1-3) struck first when Baker found Lucas Lanning for a 57-yard scoring play, giving Lewis Mills an early 6-0 lead. The Spartans marched downfield on their next possession and threatened take a two touchdown advantage. But Baker fumbled the ball out of the end zone for a touchback. It was an early omen for Lewis Mills, which also got stopped inside the 5-yard line right before halftime.
“We had plenty opportunities and left a lot of points out there,” Lewis Mills coach Jose Santana said. “We had a lot of dropped passes, a lot of missed tackles, the same thing that makes everyone lose games. When you don’t execute you’re going to lose many games. We need a little growing up to do.”
After the touchback, Segaline dropped back and rifled a long pass to the sidelines where Mann caught the ball in stride and raced into the end zone for an electrifying 80-yard score. Segaline hit Nate DeRita with a 33-yard TD toss on H-K’s next possession for a 16-6 lead.
Lewis Mills, which outgained the Cougars, 360-345, answered when senior Matt Rinkus made a terrific leaping catch on a 11-yard scoring toss from Baker to make it 16-12.
But Vinci’s 4-yard TD run capped a 9-play, 56-yard drive with 3:50 left in the first half and the Cougars took a 24-12 lead at intermission.
Vinci added two more touchdowns in the third quarter, catching a 2-yard TD pass from Segaline and then plunging in from the 1-yard line with 4:12 left in the third as H-K stretched its lead to 37-12.
“Lewis Mills surprised us early but the kids recovered and kept fighting the whole game,” Baklik added. “We saw some excitement out there from our players that is good going into the middle of the season so hopefully we’ll have a strong finish.”
Haddam-Killingworth 44, Lewis Mills 18
Lewis Mills 6 6 0 6 0 — 18
Haddam-Killingworth 16 8 13 7 0 — 44
L—Lucas Lanning 57 pass from Trevor Baker (Kick no good)
H—Trevor Mann 80 pass from Alex Segaline (Christos Lavelle run)
H—Nate DeRita 13 pass from Alex Segaline (Segaline pass to Mann)
L—Matt Rinkus 11 pass from Trevor Baker (Pass failed)
H—Alex Segaline 4 run (Segaline pass to Mann)
H—Noah Vinci 2 pass from Alex Segaline (Pass failed)
H—Noah Vinci 1 run (Segaline kick)
L—Mike Ciccarelli 3 run (Pass failed)
H—Alex Segaline 54 int ret (Segaline kick)
Team records: Haddam-Killingworth 2-3; Lewis Mills 1-3
Comments: Alex Segaline completed 7 of 11 passes for 152 yards and 3 TDs. Christos Lavelle had 95 yards on 18 carries. Mike Ciccarelli had 118 yards on 19 carries for Lewis Mills