SOUTHINGTON – The Simsbury High football team got a rude introduction to top 10 football. No. 5 Southington effectively muzzled the Trojans and their triple option veer offense in a 38-0 victory last Friday night at Fontana Field.
Southington (3-0, 1-0 CCC Div. I West) allowed Simsbury more yards returning kickoffs (48 yards) than they did rushing (43 yards) or passing (4 yards).
Southington had 12 tackles for losses and allowed Simsbury to cross into Blue Knight territory just twice.
“Hats off to Southington, a very talented team,” Simsbury coach Jeff Osborne said. “That is what it is like to play a Division I football team.”
Southington coach Mike Drury praised his defensive unit – from the coaches that prepared the Knights for Simsbury’s unique offense to the players who made it happen.
“They had to pay attention to the details. They were very disciplined in their reads and they gang tackled the ball,” Drury said. “It was a sustained effort. They didn’t take a play off.”
Simsbury (1-2, 0-1) did make some plays – but not nearly enough to keep them in the game. Brad Helmkamp recovered a fumble and intercepted a pass after teammate Adam McIveen hit Southington quarterback Stephen Barmore, resulting in a wobbly pass that floated into the air.
“Defensively, we got some turnovers and we set up our offense,” Osborne said. “We had some tackles for losses.”
But Barmore and the Blue Knights had too many weapons. Barmore, who will attend Yale next fall, completed 24-of-37 passes for 317 yards and four TDs. Receiver
Alex Jamele caught 13 passes for 171 yards and two touchdowns. Jamele had plenty of yards after the catch, breaking tackles and making Simsbury defenders miss him.
Barmore shared the ball, too. Kyle Borawski caught six passes for 83 yards while teammate Jasen Rose caught four for 49 yards. And when there was no receivers open, Barmore had the speed to scramble for 41 yards on seven carries to keep the ball moving downfield.
“Once we minimize our mistakes, we showed that offense is a potent one,” Barmore said. Southington led 14-0 at halftime but the Knights were slowed down by two turnovers (fumble, interception) and six penalties for 58 yards.
Southington took a 7-0 lead on a 14-play, 91-yard drive that started on its own nine-yard line. Barmore completed four passes on the play, including a sharp 19-yard completion to Rose into Simsbury territory. Jamele scored on a 1-yard pass from Barmore.
The Blue Knights made it 14-0 on a 11-yard pass from Barmore to Rose with 3:51 left in the second quarter. On the drive, Barmore had a 15-yard run to the Simsbury 11-yard line.
Southington scored on its first two possessions of the third quarter to cement its victory. They marched 60 yards on its eight-play opening drive with Tyler Hyde scoring from the one. On its next drive, Hyde ran 19 yards on first down and on the next play, Barmore hit Borawski with a 42-yard touchdown pass.
Helmkamp led Simsbury with 29 yards on 10 carries. Quarterback James Hermsen gained nine yards on seven carries.
“It is a tricky defense to defend,” Southington linebacker Zach Maxwell said. “It is all about assignment defense. And we fulfilled all of our assignments tonight. If you can stop the football in the backfield, you can clog up the holes.”
Nick Albergo ran back three kickoffs for 28 yards while Elijah Barrows had a 20-yard return for the Trojans.
Simsbury’s best drive was its opening drive. Helmkamp gained eight and seven yards, respectively, on the first two plays the Trojans ran. Hermsen completed an eight-yard pass to Eric Bedson to the Southington 47 but Simsbury was four yards short of the first down and had to punt.
In the final minute in the first half, Simsbury moved the ball to the Southington 49-yard line on a two yard run from Jacob Cassano. On the next play, Nathan Craine was nailed for a four-yard loss.
NOTES: Simsbury’s Henry Carr also recovered a fumble in the second half. … The margin of victory was the largest for the Blue Knights in this series since a 39-point win by Lewis High in 1946. Southington was known as Lewis until 1950. … Southington leads the all-time series between the two schools, 32-11-5. It began in 1910.
Southington 38, Simsbury 0
Simsbury (1-2) 0 0 0 0 — 0
Southington (3-0) 0 14 21 3 — 38
So: Alex Jamele 12 pass from Stephen Barmore (Kyle Smick kick), 8:52
So: Jasen Rose 11 pass from Barmore (Smick kick), 3:51
So: Tyler Hyde 1 run (Smick kick), 9:18
So: Kyle Borawski 42 pass from Barmore (Smick kick), 6:45
So: Jamele 4 pass from Barmore (Smick kick), 0:00
So: Smick 19 FG, 4:15
RUSHING: Southington – Stephen Barmore 7-41, Tyler Hyde 10-40, Zach Maxwell 1-0; Simsbury – James Hermsen 9-0, Jacob Cassanto 6-6, Sam Collins 1-0; Jacob Cassarno 6-6, Jeremy DeMaio 2-minus 1; Brad Helmkamp 10-29
PASSING: Southington – Stephen Barmore 24-37-1, 317 yards; Simsbury – James Hermsen 2-8-2,4
RECEIVING: Southington – Alex Jamele 13-171, Kyle Borawski 6-83, Jasen Rose 4-49, Joe Daigle 1-17; Simsbury —Craine 1-minus 4, Eric Bedson 1-8