- COACH — TOM BROCKETT (13th year, 148-11)
- CONFERENCE — NVL Copper
- PLAYOFF CLASS — Class S (310 boys enrolled)
- HOME — Jarvis Stadium, at Nolan Athletic Complex, Ansonia
- 2017 RECORD — 12-1 (Lost to St. Joseph in Class S final)
- 2018 OPENER — Sept. 7 at WCA, 7 p.m.
- TEAM WEBSITE — AnsoniaFootball.com, Maxpreps | TWITTER — @AnsoniaFootball
- DARWIN AMAYA, Sr. RB/OLB (5-10, 205)
- MARTIN ANTOINE, Sr. OT (6-0, 225)
- LUCA BELENCHIA, Sr. OT (6-1, 212)
- TERJUAN BURNEY, Sr. OL/DE (6-1, 245)
- JOHN PICHECO, Sr. QB/RB/DB (5-11, 190)
- TYLER NAVARRO, Sr. LB (5-9, 205)
- TYLER CAFARO, Jr. QB/TE/LB (6-0, 195)
- GARRETT CAFARO, Jr. TE/DE (6-2, 208)
- SHYKEEM HARMON, Jr. RB/DB (5-9, 165)
RB/DB Markell Dobbs, TE/LB Cody Teodosio, OL/DL Kolby Ortiz, OL/DE Michael LaRovera
Last year at this time, Ansonia coach Tom Brockett was excited to have a lot of experience up and down his lineup.
This year, it’s a little different, and a lot younger, on Wakelee Avenue, with just three starters back.
“It’s the same thing. You’ve got to coach hard every year,” Brockett said. “Every team takes on an attitude of its own. It all becomes about attitude and effort and buying into the team program.”
Rival coaches generally see lots of talent on the Chargers’ roster. Few see them going anywhere, even if a few mention Naugatuck as a favorite.
A few key players have been around for at least some of the team’s eight consecutive state final appearances, one shy of the state (and, as it happens, school) record since the CIAC tournament began in 1976.
“Coming out last year, losing to St. Joe’s was — it broke a lot of people’s hearts,” lineman Terjuan Burney said. “We’ve got to build our strength.”
The Chargers graduated five first-team All-NVL players, star running back Markell Dobbs, linebacker Cody Teodosio, linemen Michael LaRovera and Kolby Ortiz, and defensive back (and quarterback) Justin Lopez.
The return of the sixth, Burney, gives them one of the state’s best linemen in his coach’s eyes.
There are a few options at quarterback, including Tyler Cafaro, banged up in preseason but hopefully ready to open the season. Sophomore quarterback Sheldon Schuler opening eyes in the preseason.
Darwin Amaya and Shykeem Harmon are among those looking to fill the hole left by Dobbs, the latest in the Chargers’ run of standout running backs, part of the tradition.
Tradition, mystique and aura can mean something for some teams even when they’re not their most potent. Will having “Ansonia” across their chest help this year, or will it just be a target for the rest of the NVL?
“It all depends what we do to take advantage of (the tradition),” Brockett said. “If we bring the attitude and energy of the great Ansonia teams, it will help us. If we don’t do it, the name on the shirt doesn’t mean anything.
“You’ve got to step up. You’ve got to do your part. We don’t make any excuses. Nobody’s going to feel sorry for us.”
- Sept. 7 — at WCA* 7 p.m.
- Sept. 14 — HOLY CROSS,* 7 p.m.
- Sept. 21 — at Oxford,** 6 p.m.
- Sept. 28 — ST. PAUL,* 7 p.m.
- Oct. 4 — WATERTOWN,* 6 p.m.
- Oct. 19 — at Derby,** 7 p.m.
- Oct. 25 — at Kennedy,* 6 p.m.
- Nov. 2 — at Woodland,** 6:30 p.m.
- Nov. 8 — SEYMOUR,** 6 p.m.
- Nov. 22 — NAUGATUCK,* 10 a.m.
Home games in CAPS