FAIRFIELD — It’s hard for head coach Kevin O’Hara to hold back a smile when talking about his team. The Falcons hold a 6-1 record as of Monday and are one of the top teams in the competitive FCIAC. And oh yeah, this is best start in the program’s history.
But it’s not just the victories that have O’Hara and the rest of the team so upbeat.
“Things just seem to be coming together with kids,” O’Hara said. “They’re working hard, they’re bonding well; it’s been a fun season so far.”
So what has made this season so fun and so different than previous? It’s a combination of a strong senior and sophomore class that has meshed seamlessly together providing the right amount of chemistry and competitiveness on the pitch.
“(We have a) wonderful upper class but a big driving force is the sophomore class,” O’Hara said. They are challenging the upperclassman for playing time and they’re doing it the right way. And the upperclassmen are accepting the challenge.”
O’Hara mentioned captains and third-year varsity players Jordan Layne and Erik Stahle as two of the leaders on the field for Ludlowe. The Falcons start just five seniors complimented by three juniors and three sophomores. Layne explained the team is getting contributions from a slew of players including sophomores Nicholas Demaso and Richie Bellucci and transfer Tullio Almedia. He also named transfer Lorin Tobey and junior Matt Doyle who have stepped up for the team.
Defensively, Layne, more of a midfielder, has played back for the team and helped anchor a young but immensely talented defense. The team runs a flat back four with sophomore keeper Frederick Meagher in the net. After giving up two goals in the team’s season-opening loss to Greenwich, Meagher and the defense have allowed just one goal in the last six games.
“Between goalie and back four we only have one senior,” O’Hara said. “It’s been a great thing. Fred has really stepped up for us.”
While the talent is there for a historic season, it’s been the age-old mantra of a “team game” for the Falcons. Ludlowe won just six games last year and totaled that in the first month of play this fall.
“It’s really wonderful to how the team is working together,” Stahle said. “We don’t have a star like we have in the past. It’s really everyone on the team supporting each other by playing their hardest.”
Added Layne: “(The chemistry) is great. No one is fighting at all.”
O’Hara said the only problem the team has at this point early in the season is finding everyone playing time.
“It’s a good problem,” O’Hara said. “Been working on combinations and kids are still surprising me. I start 11 and usually sub three maybe four; now subbing maybe seven or eight kids. I want to find them playing time.”
Ludlowe was set to face Harding on Tuesday evening and then Wilton Thursday. The Falcons will travel to Warde next Thursday.
But meanwhile, the team is taking it one game at a time an enjoying the season and what it is turning in to.
“When you’re winning things are easy,” O’Hara said. “I keep stressing we’re going to hit a bump in the road one of these days and when it comes, it’s going to really define our character and how we handle it.”