NEW CANAAN — With the majority of today’s high school football teams running a spread offense, it seems like each squad can’t have enough receivers.
Greenwich, which possessed a formidable group of wide receivers during their highly successful 2017 season, is once again, well-equipped at the position.
Quarterback Gavin Muir had plenty of options to throw to during the two-day Grip It & Rip It Passing Tournament at New Canaan High School — a competition Greenwich excelled at for the second straight year.
Making it to the quarterfinal-round, the Cardinals posted a record of 8-1 in the tournament, their lone loss coming against Archbishop Stepinac, which fell to New Canaan in the championship game. Muir effectively spread the ball around to a variety of receivers during the Grip It & Rip It event.
“With it being my senior season, I have a great connection with the receivers,” said Muir, who passed for a program-record 2,902 yards and 33 touchdowns last fall. “I have played on the same team as them since my freshman year and our chemistry has carried over through the years.”
Lance Large, a rising senior, made several impressive receptions during Saturday’s games for the Cardinals. Large is coming off a season in which he caught 42 passes for 411 yards with five touchdowns for Greenwich, which went 12-1 last season and advanced to the championship game of the Class LL Tournament.
“Our experienced players have good chemistry with Gavin,” Large said. “Also, our younger players are getting chemistry with him. It’s good to have a quarterback like Gavin. It’s amazing when you look in the backfield and see Gavin and Tysen Comizio (team’s leading rusher from 2017). Seeing them gives our team a lot of confidence.”
After going a perfect 5-0 during the pool-play portion of the passing tournament on Friday, Greenwich defeated Brunswick School and Fairfield Ludlowe on Saturday, before losing to Stepinac in the single-elimination round.
“It’s great to play against good FCIAC competition in this tournament and outside competition as well,” Large said. “It’s good to see how your team measures up to them.”
Stephen Bennett, who is also entering his senior year at GHS, hauled in 25 passes for 326 yards and reached the end zone twice last season. He was also impressive over the weekend.
“We have receivers with great hands and great ability and I think when we put the pads on it is going to show, especially when it starts to become more physical,” Bennett said. “Our timing on our out routes has been really good.”
Seniors Garrett Murphy, Chris Wint and Matt Davey also made their mark at receiver in the tournament and are determined to play significant roles in the fall.
“We have really good coaches, who coach us up really well and have everything planned out for us,” Murphy said. “Our quarterback has a great arm, knows the game of football and knows how to get everyone the ball. It’s a good situation for a receiver to be in.”
Added Wint: “All of our receivers help each other out all the time. We have some young receivers, but our experienced guys will show them the way and help them adjust.”
Muir likes the assets he sees from the team’s receiving corps.
“Lance is a guy who runs crisp routes and has good hands, Stephen is a sure-handed receiver, who makes big plays, Garrett is a great inside receiver and Matt and Chris can get down the field and catch the ball.”
Comizio, who rushed for 1,379 yards in 2017, is also a receiving threat.
“Our offense has great potential,” GHS offensive coordinator Dactavian Newton said. “We have an experienced quarterback, several running backs returning, an experienced line and some starting receivers back. The potential is there for us to pick up where we left off from last season. Teams will have to defend the whole field against us. I am very impressed with what I saw today. Our younger guys showed they can compete and make plays.”