Above: Zhyaire Fernandes was among the country’s top-five freshman receiving leaders in 2013.
- Coach: Doug Cotto (2nd year, 4-7)
- Conference: SWC Colonial
- Playoff Class: L (549 boys enrollment)
- Home: Bulldog Field, BHS, Stratford
- 2013 Record: 4-7 (4-6 SWC)
- 2014 Kickoff: Sept. 12 vs. Pomperaug, 7 p.m.
- Captains: Sr. DB Lucas Mola, Sr. DE/OG Dat Nguyen, Jr. LB/RB Cole Davis
- Team website: MaxPreps Page
- Zhyaire Fernandes, Soph. WR/CB (6-0, 195)
- Cole Davis, Jr. RB/LB, (6-0, 200)
- Adam Wojenski, Jr., QB (5-11, 175)
- Lucas Mola, Sr. DB (5-11, 180)
- Dat Nguyen, Sr. OG/DE (5-11, 200)
- Sebastian Smaga, Sr., OT (6-3, 270)
- Peter Davis, Jr. WR (6-0, 170)
- Brett Bogdwicz, Soph., DB (5-11, 175)
Nolan Aurelia, QB; Devante Teel, WR/CB; Andrick Bernadel, LB; Anthony Johnson, OL/DL; Ben Ruskin, OL/DL; Justin Townsend, RB/CB.
Bunnell is young… exceptionally young. But you won’t hear second-year Doug Cotto offer that as an excuse. In fact, he’s confident his team can make bigger strides back toward becoming an SWC contender.
Bunnell never lacks for skill players, even if these are on the young side. Fernandes, a 6-0 wide out whose 812 yards receiving were fifth-most recorded among the country’s freshmen, is proving himself a top threat. He’ll be teamed with another 6-0 receiver in Peter Davis.
Junior 6-0, 200-pound back Cole Davis, Cotto said, has a chance to be a strong ball-carrier. Bunnell will feature a new quarterback, junior Adam Wojenski, who came on in relief to lead the team to victory over rival Stratford on Thanksgiving. The lines, also young, will be led by Dat Nguyen and anchored by big tackle Sebastian Smaga.
Cotto preached defense a year ago, but the Bulldogs allowed 325 points, fourth-worst in the SWC. Led by senior Lucas Mola, Cotto expects it to be fast and physical. Its performance is key to Bunnell’s success.
As confident as Bunnell is, however, its early schedule looks humbling. In the season’s first four weeks Bunnell will face the four of the most successful programs in recent SWC history, including 2014 league favorites Newtown (Week 2) and Brookfield (Week 4). So, Cotto will will have a good idea of where his team stands among the league hierarchy before the leaves turn.
If the Dawgs can survive that gauntlet — and, fortunately, all but the Brookfield game is home — then anything’s possible. Realistically, Bunnell looks like it might be a year away.
- Sept. 12 — Pomperaug, 7 p.m.
- Sept. 19 — Newtown, 7 p.m.
- Sept. 26 — Masuk, 7 p.m.
- Oct. 2 — at Brookfield, 7 p.m.
- Oct. 10 — at Weston, 7 p.m.
- Oct. 17 — Torrington, 7 p.m.
- Oct. 24 — at New Milford, 7 p.m.
- Nov. 1 — at Notre Dame-Fairfield, 1 p.m.
- Nov. 7 — at New Fairfield, 7 p.m.
- Nov. 14 — Bethel, 7 p.m.
- Nov. 26 — Stratford, 7 p.m.