GLASTONBURY >> Stephen Barmore took the blame for the play that put his Southington teammates in a bind late in Friday afternoon’s clash with arch-rival Glastonbury.
But he knew, he just knew, the Blue Knights would dig themselves out of it.
Thanks to Tyler Hyde and his offensive line, they did.
The Blue Knights split open a gap-ing wide hole in the Glastonbury front and Hyde scooted through untouched for the winning 57-yard touchdown run in a 16-9 victory Friday night at Tomahawk Field.
The victory effectively gave Southington vengeance for their early exit from last year’s Class LL quarterfinals at Glastonbury’s hands.
“You’ve gotta move on and it’s a new season and everything, but after last season it was still burning in my heart,” said Hyde, a 5-foot-9 senior who was a reserve on last year’s team. “And I just wanted to beat them.”
It also absolved Barmore for his defensive mistake that almost cost Southington the game.
With Southington leading 8-3 midway through the fourth quarter of what was a defensive battle, Glastonbury quarterback Jalen Ollie threw a pass over the middle to Anthony Anisimov.
Barmore, a safety, went for the hit, rather than the tackle. Anisimov bounced off Barmore and bolted 71 yards for the go-ahead score.
It was Glastonbury’s only big break of the day against Southington’s smothering defense, yet it gave the Tomahawks a 9-8 lead with 5:57 remaining.
“After they made that big play which — I’ll admit, was complete 100 percent my fault — I went back to the sidelines and told the boys, we’re in for a storybook ending,” Barmore said.
Despite struggling all day to finish drives, it took Southington just two plays to write that ending.
Hyde’s run began with a perfect fake from Barmore and some textbook blocking at the point of attack.
“I could have run a truck through it,” said Hyde, who finished with 116 yards on 16 carries. “The offensive line just got it done today. They were the MVPs, just like last Thanksgiving.”
From there, the Southington defense led by ends Zack Maxwell and Zach Jamele, resumed its dominance.
Glastonbury failed on a fourth-down play deep in its own end. When Glastonbury got the ball back, Jermele swiped the ball from Ollie’s grasp. Southington recovered with 1:11 left and ran out the clock.
Ollie, the son of UConn men’s basketball coach Kevin Ollie, finished with 233 yards passing.
“There’s nothing like (playing defense),” Jermele said. “It’s definitely better than offense I can tell you that. Knocking out a running back or a quarterback, there’s no feeling like it. Making plays, that’s how you do it.”
Southington 16, Glastonbury 9
Southington 0 3 2 11—16
Glastonbury 0 3 0 6—9
S—Kyle Smick 35 field goal
G—Nick Hobert 26 field goal
S—Safety, Zach Jamele tackled Kyran McKinney in end zone
S—Smick 32 field goal
G—Anthony Anisimov 71 pass Jalen Ollie (run failed)
S—Tyler Hyde 57 run (Jason Rose pass Stephen Barmore)
Records: Southington 1-0; Glastonbury 0-1