WOLCOTT >> For the first time since 2005 the Woodland Hawks are headed to the Class S State Championship game after defeating Bloomfield, 30-26.
“There is no better feeling,” said Woodland senior quarterback Tanner Kingsley whose brothers played on the 2004 and 2005 State Champion Woodland teams. “No other goal then this, while I was growing up.”
With a minute left in the game, Bloomfield had the ball down four. Senior quarterback Norvel Stewart rolled out and threw a ball down the field, but was intercepted by the Hawks’ Joe Poeta, sealing the win for Woodland.
“Stewart did a great job leading our team,” said Bloomfield head coach Tylon Outlaw about his quarterback that rushed for 222-yards and four rushing touchdowns in the loss.
Woodland will face Ansonia on Friday, 7:05 p.m. at Arute Field on the campus of Central Connecticut State.
Kingsley led the way for the Hawks throwing for 258-yards and four touchdowns, which gave him the State record of 113 career passing touchdowns.
“His dedication, his work ethic, he stepped up,” said Woodland head coach, Tim Shea. “He stepped up when we needed him to.”
Kingsley wasn’t the lone star for the Hawks in the semifinals.
After losing back up running Cody Vaccarelli to a knee injury in the first half, they were already missing starting running back Sean McAllen who was out with a concussion, the Hawks turned to senior wide receiver Taylor Tucciarone.
“I just thought of my teammates,” said Tucciarone who played running back for the Hawks last season. “I knew I had to step up.”
He did rushing for 92-yards just in the second half to go along with his seven catches 109-yards and two touchdowns that he had in the first half.
“Before the second half in the locker room we told him that he was going back to running back,” said Shea. “It was a great effort, he’s bought in. I am very pleased with his effort.”
“Tucciarone stepped up,” said Kingsley. “He’s an unbelievable player and leader.”
The Hawks jumped out early to an 18-0 lead in the first half, on three Kingsley touchdown passes, before Bloomfield got into the end zone for the first time, right before the half, on a six-yard run by Stewart.
On Bloomfield’s second play of the second half, after Woodland punted, Stewart scrambled for a 72-yard touchdown run to pull the Warhawks within four.
That was the closest the Warhawks would get to the Hawks.
Both teams went back and forth on the final four touchdowns of the game, until Stewart’s last pass was intercepted.
“The team kept fighting no matter what happened,” said Outlaw. “I am real proud of these guys to keep their composure.”
Woodland will face Ansonia in the Class S title game Friday at 7:05 p.m. at Central Connecticut State’s Arute Field.
Woodland 30 Bloomfield 26
At Wolcott High School
Woodland 12 6 6 6 – 30
Bloomfield 0 7 13 6 – 26
W – 21-yard pass by Tanner Kingsley to Jack Pinho (kick no good)
W – 22-yard pass by Tanner Kingsley to Taylor Tucciarone (kick no good)
W – 9-yard pass by Tanner Kingsley to Taylor Tucciarone (2-point attempt failed)
B – 6-yard run by Norvel Smith (Justin Antoine kick good)
B – 72-yard run Norvel Smith (Antoine kick good)
W –2-yard run by Tanner Kingsley (2-point attempt no good)
B – 4-yard run by Norvel Smith (kick no good)
W – 12-yard pass Tanner Kingsley to Joe Poeta, (2-pt no good)
B – 4-yard run by Norvel Stewart (kick no good)
W – Tanner Kingsley 20-33, 258-yards, four touchdowns. B – Norvel Stewart 5-8, 46-yards, one interception
W – Coby Vaccarelli 8 for 41-yards; Chris Slavin 1 for -2; Tanner Kingsley 9 for -19-yards, one touchdown; Taylor Tucciarone 19 for 92-yards. B – Norvel Stewart 27 for 222-yards, 4 touchdowns; Travis Thompson 16 for 71-yards; Andrell Pinnock 1 for 0; Duane Roberts 1 for 4-yards;
W – Taylor Tucciarone, 7 catches for 109-yards, 2 touchdowns; Coby Vaccarelli 3 for 26-yards; Jack Pinho 3 catches 53-yards, one touchdown; Dylan Abarzua 2 catches for 20-yards; Joe Poeta 3 catches for 27-yards, one touchdown. Mike Kenney 2 catch for 23-yards. B – Russell Thompson-Bishop 2 catches 20-yards; Pedro Roman 1 catch 9-yards; Andrell Pinnock 1 catch for 8-yards.
Records: Woodland 12-2, Bloomfield 10-3