Above: Highlight reel for Notre Dame-West Haven sophomore Nico Ragaini, who is expected to be one of the top receivers in the SCC.
- Coach: Tom Marcucci (23rd year, 153-71-6)
- Conference: SCC Division I East
- Playoff Class: L (622 boys enrollment)
- Home: Veteran’s Stadium, West Haven
- 2013 Record: 5-6
- 2014 Kickoff: St. Joseph, Sept. 11, 7 p.m.
- Captains: Zach Cofrancesco, Tim Jambor
- Team website: MaxPreps page
- Zach Cofrancesco, 5-8, 166, Sr., WR/DB
- Tim Jambor, 5-10, 185, Sr., LB
- Owen Barnell, 6-1, 245, Sr., G
- Kyle Cullen, 6-2, 240, Sr., T/DE
- Kameron Matthews, 6-3, 195, Jr., TE
- Christian Lupoli, 6-3, 188, Jr., QB
- Nico Ragaini, 6-0, 178, So., WR
- Joe Petrosino, 5-10, 235, Sr., DT
- Kobe Wiggins, 5-9, 171, Jr., RB/LB
- Prince Brooks, 5-8, 170, Jr., RB/DB
- Chris Stanio, 5-10, 185, Sr., LB
Cameran Tucker, RB (177 carries, 967 yards, 19 touchdowns); Sal Esposito, RB/LB (491 rushing yards, 74 tackles); Drew Arciuolo, WR/DB (35 catches, 656 yards, 12 touchdowns, six interceptions)
The veteran Marcucci believes the Green Knights should be improved in most areas.
The coach calls Lupoli, Brooks, Wiggins, Cofrancesco and Ragaini “playmakers”. Lupoli takes over full-time at quarterback after sharing duties with Blake Rice last season. Rice has since graduated. As a junior, Lupoli completed 55 of 93 passes for 863 yards and nine touchdowns. He also rushed for 324 yards and two scores.
Notre Dame has to replace its top two running backs from last season, Tucker and Esposito. Brooks and Wiggins both possess the talent to have breakout seasons this year. Brooks rushed 50 times for 238 yards and one score, and Wiggins gained 147 yards on 27 carries last season.
The receiving corp is led by Ragaini, who had an auspicious debut season as a freshman. Ragaini caught 28 passes for 418 yards and two touchdowns in his first season. Cofrancesco (five catches, 55 yards as a junior) and Matthews will also be targets for Lupoli.
The Green Knights are not big, but have outstanding team speed according to Marcucci, who added that the offensive line is expected to be improved and is one of the keys to the season.
Defensively, Notre Dame is fast and aggressive. Cofrancesco, who made 76 tackles, recovered four fumbles and had one sack and one interception as a junior, will lead that unit. Stanio (66 tackles), Brooks (64 tackles, three interceptions), Wiggins (79 tackles, three interceptions) and Petrosino (50 tackles) will also contribute on that side of the ball. Ragaini made two interceptions last season.
Last season, the Green Knights lost to five teams that qualified for the state playoffs (St. Joseph, Fairfield Prep, Ridgefield, West Haven and Hand). The other loss came to Xavier. With the same schedule this season, there is little room for error. Notre Dame opens at home against defending Class M champion St. Joseph.
- Sept. 11 — St. Joseph, 7 p.m.
- Sept. 19 — Branford, 7 p.m.*
- Sept. 26 — at Fairfield Prep (at Fairfield Ludlowe), 7 p.m.*
- Oct. 2 — at Ridgefield, 7 p.m.
- Oct. 10 — West Haven, 7 p.m.**
- Oct. 17 — at Amity, 7 p.m.*
- Oct. 24 — Xavier, 7 p.m.*
- Oct. 31 — at Cheshire, 7 p.m.**
- Nov. 7 — at Wilbur Cross, 3 p.m.**
- Nov. 14 — Hand, 7 p.m.**
- Nov. 27 — at Hamden, 10:30 a.m.*
*-conference game**-division game