BERLIN — Shawn Robinson and Tahje Yopp combined for 316 yards on 50 carries and accounted for all five touchdowns as New Britain steamrolled Berlin 33-14 in the Wishbone Bowl Friday night at Sage Park.
With the victory, New Britain closed its regular season with a five-game win streak and clinched its first Class LL playoff berth since 2014.
Robinson finished with 212 yards and two touchdowns on 30 carries. He also caught a touchdown pass. Yopp, New Britain’s quarterback, added 102 yards and two touchdowns on 20 carries.
Berlin, which had already clinched a playoff berth in Class M the week before, fell to 9-1 in its regular-season finale. New Britain improved to 9-1.
Both teams now await the outcome of games on Saturday and on Thanksgiving Week to see where they end up for the state quarterfinals, which begin Tuesday, Nov. 27. Berlin has already clinched a home quarterfinal. New Britain has an outside chance at a home game in Class LL.
Yopp scored on a pair of touchdown runs and threw a 14-yard touchdown pass to a wide-open Robinson on the final play from scrimmage in the first half to give the Hurricanes a 21-14 halftime lead.
To that point, the game had been fairly even. But the second half was a different story.
While New Britain’s defense held the Redcoats to just 35 yards on 17 plays, the Canes pounded away on the ground, amassing nearly 200 rushing yards and three scores to put the game away.
Even when forced into its first (and, as it turned out, only) passing situation of the second half — on 4th and 11 from the Berlin 42 — Yopp merely scrambled 11 yards for the first down.
That play, which came toward the end of the third quarter, set up Robinson’s 1-yard run to start the fourth quarter and a 27-14 New Britain lead.
Another defensive stop and New Britain inexorably marched down the field again, soaking up clock in the process. The Canes put the game away with Robinson’s third score of the game — a 17-yard run.
Berlin’s Kevin Dunn was 12-of-18 passing for 171 yards, most of which came in the first half. He also scored on a 9-yard touchdown run early in the second half to cut New Britain’s early lead to 14-7.
Tony Undercuffler set up that tying drive by pouncing on a Robinson fumble at the Berlin 10. After a 37-yard pass to Larry St. Pierre, Alex Halkias bolted 23 yards for a score to tie the game with 5:12 remaining before halftime.
Johnny Velez also had a fumble recovery for New Britain in the first half.
— Pete Paguaga (@PetePaguaga) November 17, 2018
NEW BRITAIN 33, BERLIN 14
NEW BRITAIN 14 7 0 12 — 33
BERLIN 0 14 0 0 — 14
NB–Tahje Yopp 5 run (Tyree Pinnock kick)
NB–Yopp 3 run (Pinnock kick)
B–Kevin Dunn 9 run (Giancarlo Tufano kick)
B–Alex Halkias 23 run (Tufano kick)
NB–Shawn Robinson 14 pass from Yopp (Pinnock kick)
NB–Robinson 1 run (kick failed)
NB–Robinson 17 run (pass failed)
Records: New Britain 9-1, Berlin 9-1.