TORRINGTON >> After an opening scare, Seymour’s football team found itself, on the ground and in the air, for a 49-7 romp over Torrington Friday night at Torrington’s Robert H. Frost Sports Complex.
Torrington’s Dom Phengkaen dashed 55 yards in the game’s first play from scrimmage for an opening 7-0 score.
“I called the exact wrong defense on that play,” Seymour coach Tom Lennon said.
After that, Lennon and the Wildcats did almost everything right and Torrington, with just one returning starter on the line, showed its youth.
Buoyed by the opening play on offense, Red Raider linebacker Cherique Cherry recovered a fumble at Torrington’s 18-yard line, stifling Seymour’s opening drive.
But three plays later, Torrington coughed up the first of its own four fumbles for the night.
“We played a very good Seymour team and you can’t turn the ball over against a team like that,” Torrington Coach Gaitan Rodriguez said.
Starting from the Torrington 11, Seymour quarterback Jaylen Kelley and running back Bobby Melms rammed the ball home in three plays.
It was the opening note of a spectacular duet for the Wildcats.
Torrington fumbled again; Kelley ran 28 yards for the first-quarter lead.
After a Torrington punt, Melms highlighted a five-play Seymour scoring drive with a 24-yard run, then rammed it in on a final 4-yard burst.
Kelley finished the game with 92 yards on 11 carries, all in the first half; Melms, sitting out the second half, gained 47 yards on 9 carries.
The Wildcats led 21-7 after the first quarter.
In the second, Kelly scored on a short run on the ground. Tamar Coverson-Epps ran 38 yards, plus the final one for another. Kelley passed to Lucas Bown for a third, 41-7.
The Seymour kick failed – significant because the CIAC’s new scoring rule requires a 42-point third-quarter spread to set off a running clock; in the fourth quarter, it takes a 35-point spread.
The Wildcats scored again two plays into the third quarter. A point-after kick would leave them a point short.
Backup quarterback Ryan Keough threw to kicker Rocco Vertuccio for the two points.
“We’re thin so I wanted to get the clock running,” said Coach Lennon. “I even asked the refs if it would be unsportsmanlike.”
By then, nobody wanted to stay longer than they had to.
Kelley stayed strictly with the passing game for his final plays.
“We’ll get it all down,” he said.
Melms was content to stay on the bench.
“We just want to win games,” he said.
For Torrington, “It’s going to take a lot of reps for this unit to get to playing together,” said Coach Rodriguez. “We’re looking for them to get better every week.”
“I’m glad we had them early,” said Lennon.
Seymour 49, Torrington 7
At Torrington High School
Seymour 21 20 8 0 – 49
Torrington 7 0 0 0 – 7
T – Dom Phengkaen 55-yard run (Rickey Hernandez kick)
S – Bobby Melms 5-yard run (Rocco Vertuccio kick)
S – Jaylen Kelley 28-yard run (Vertuccio kick)
S – Melms 4-yard run (Vertuccio kick)
S – Kelley 1-yard run (Vertuccio kick)
S – Tamar Coverson-Epps 1-yard run (Vertuccio kick)
S – Lucas Bowen 22-yard pass from Kelley (kick failed)
S – Austin Green 18-yard pass from Ryan Keough (Vertuccio pass from Keough)
Rushing: S – Bobby Melms 9 rushes/47 yards; Jaylen Kelley 11/92; Tamar Coverson-Epps 3/50. T – Dom Phenkaen 5/85; Tory Hammonds 2/27; Dylan Myrie 2/1.
Passing: S – Jaylen Kelly 6 attempts/11 completions/126 yards; Ryan Keough 2/3/21. T – Brandon Reiff 0/5/0.
Receiving: S – Lucas Bowen 2 receptions/56 yards; Jonathan Dumas 2/22; Austin Green 1/18; Alex Massie 1/48; Rocco Vertuccio 1/3.
Records: Seymour 1-0; Torrington 0-1.