Tolland’s Ryan Carlson, who expertly took over our Instagram account on game day, and then capped his career by rushing for three touchdowns and scripting perhaps the craziest play of Thanksgiving Week, has been voted the GameTimeCT star of Thanksgiving Week by, you, the fans.
In his final game, the senior running back and linebacker ran 30 times for 188 yards and three scores, caught a pass for five yards and made five tackles, two for a loss, and had a pair of sacks on defense.
But it wasn’t a touchdown he scored that got the most attention.
With Tolland ahead 7-0 just 10 seconds before halftime, he took a handoff and bolted right, then back across the grain before running into trouble at the EO Smith 17.
And then he stunned everybody by lateraling the ball back to teammate Aidan D’Amato, who went in for the score and a 14-0 lead.
“The first workout freshman year, we play this thing called ‘crazy football,’” Carlson told the Journal-Inquirer of Manchester’s Kyle Maher. “This game, there are no rules, You throw the ball, laterals. So what do you think? Last play before the half, and something miraculous happens. I think I’m getting tackled, I see my boy, and it’s crazy football instincts.”
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The Eagles went on to win, convincingly, capping a 7-3 season and sending coach Scott Cady out a winner.
Cady, who was diagnosed with cancer before the season, but was determined to coach the team through the season, announced he was stepping down after the game.
Back in May, Carlson created a GoFundMe page to help with his coach’s expenses. It has raised over $14,000 to date.
According to Cady, he is finished with his chemotherapy treatments and his prognosis is good. He told the J-I and Hartford Courant he thought he’d be coming back as coach but felt this was a good group to go out with.
Carlson and the Eagles certainly made it a memorable day and night.
While Carlson deservedly won the fan vote, there were plenty of great performances across the state. You can seed them all here.
Here were the top getters out of 2,565 votes cast!
Ryan Carlson, Tolland — 10%
Jon O’Coin, Rockville — 7%
Connor Pace, Wethersfield — 6%
Sean Nelson, Fairfield Prep — 6%
Jason Palmieri, Woodland — 5%
Ryan Janz, Fairfield Warde — 5%
James Tarver, Maloney — 5%