Gridiron preview for Nov. 2

By MICHAEL LETENDRE
STAFF WRITER
BRISTOL – There will be nothing easy for the three scholastic football teams in Bristol during Week 8 as the public schools will face two of the tougher teams of the CCC.
First, Bristol Central will travel to Rocky Hill, a team looking to keep its playoff chances alive, to square off with the Terriers while Eastern travels to Northwest Catholic to battle the Indians.
St. Paul will also have its hands full in a Naugatuck Valley League battle against Sacred Heart from Bristol.
What’s going to happen this weekend?
Here’s a quick look at Week 8 of the season:
Bristol Central (2-5) vs. Rocky Hill (6-1)
Location: Muzzy Field, Bristol
Day and Time: Friday, 7 p.m.
Last Season: From Rocky Hill, the Rams fell to the Terriers 21-14 back on Nov. 18.
All-Time Series: The series edge is held by Rocky Hill, 1-0.
Last Week: Bristol Central lost to Middletown 49-0 while Rocky Hill defeated hapless Weaver 42-0 in a game that was never close.
Casual Facts: Only one team has been able to stop Middletown all season long and in the loss to Windsor, the Blue Dragons were really the better team by most accounts…Bristol Central was just overwhelmed by Middletown’s speed and defense which is certainly a dangerous combination…It was a learning experience for the Rams and, unfortunately, the teaching process may continue against a very good Rocky Hill club…And along those same lines as Middletown, the Terriers have speed Central must somehow contain…Rocky Hill is playoff bound at 6-1 and the Rams could certainly come in and play a spoiler role in this one…Hill’s only loss is a 25-14 setback to Berlin and the Terriers have scored 41 points or more during its current five-game winning streak. In fact, Rocky Hill hasn’t scored fewer than those 41 points in a victory all season long…It’s hard to take anything out of Hill’s 42-0 blanking of Weaver except for the fact that, well, the Beavers are pretty bad…Back Chris Young notched two touchdowns against Weaver and ran for over 100 yards. He’ll be one of the players the Central defense must contain…On the other side of the ball, running sensation Tyler Burrow was injured in the game against Middletown and hopefully, he’ll be back for this one…Central’s defense must be up for the challenge or else, it’s going to be another long night.
And the winner is: Bristol Central drops a tough 42-28 decision to Rocky Hill.

Bristol Eastern (4-3) at Northwest Catholic (5-2)
Location: Northwest Catholic High School, West Hartford
Day and Time: Friday, 7 p.m.
Last Season: Bristol Eastern fell to Northwest 25-0 from Muzzy Field in Bristol.
All-Time Series: Eastern leads the all-time series 4-3.
Last Win against Northwest Catholic: The Lancers defeated the Indians 13-12 from Bristol Eastern High School back on Oct. 8, 2010.
Last Week: Eastern blasted Maloney 40-13 while Northwest Catholic sank East Catholic 42-8.
Casual facts…Everything went according to plan against Maloney in Bristol Eastern’s 40-13 victory over Spartans…Except on the second to last drive of the game. That’s when Eastern quarterback Tommy Curtin appeared to suffer some sort of injury as he scooted in for a first down via a QB sneak…His status is unknown for the game against Northwest Catholic and that spells trouble…After finally getting the quarterback situation underfoot, something unfortunate happens…If Curtin can’t go, expect freshman Alex Hunter to step in and the youngster certainly brings a solid skill set to the table…Eastern running back Nick Crowley had one of his best games of the season and smashed Maloney for 181 yards and four touchdowns off of 33 carries. It was an impressive performance indeed…Crowley gets the credit in newspaper but his offensive line was outstanding as it generated holes for the back to rumble through…The Lancers used the momentum of a first drive score, plus some inspired play by the defense and special teams, to create turnovers and capture critical yardage…Everyone on the Lancers’ defense was a standout against Maloney and this group will have to be against bigger Northwest, who has size, skill and ability…Like the Lancers, the Indians have lost to the cream of the crop and beaten just about everyone else…The long ball burned Eastern a bit against Maloney and the Lancers will have to be wary of that from the Indians…Northwest has some weapons such as receiver Nick Gaynor, who can also put the ball on the ground, while Mac Crispino can also do a little ground work for the Indians…The game is at an unusual time for NWC (2 p.m. because of SATs). Perhaps, that “educational distraction” is just what the Lancers need as the Indians will be playing after being in a cramp classroom for most of the early day.
And the winner is…Eastern scores a 21-20 upset.

St. Paul (1-6) vs. Sacred Heart (3-4)
Location: St. Paul Catholic High School, Bristol
Day and Time: Friday, 7 p.m.
Last Year: St. Paul fell to the Hearts 51-20 from Municipal Stadium back on Nov. 5.
All-time NVL series: St. Paul trails in the NVL series, 2-1.
Last Week: St. Paul drilled Kennedy 41-0 in a shutout while Sacred Heart fell to Holy Cross 52-20.
Casual facts…Well, St. Paul is back in the win column and did so in grand fashion…St. Paul gained 300 yards on the ground against Kennedy and that approach worked like a charm…QB Logan Marchi only made nine passes on the day but in those 10 attempts, the crafty chucker threw for 107 yards and that opened the whole field for the running game to flourish…Jordan Rowley, Elijah Park, and Marchi were the big ground gainers as well as Mark Vasquez…Credit belongs to the St. Paul offensive and defense lines as holes were both opened and closed quickly when necessary…It was a banner day all around for the Falcons‘ program as all the hard work paid off in a handsome victory over the Eagles from Waterbury…Now, Sacred Heart comes to town in a special night game and homecoming affair…The problem for the Falcons will come in the form of Jacquan Overbey as he rushed for a touchdown and gobbled up 50 yards off 11 carries against Holy Cross. He has ability and must be stopped quickly and early in the game…The Hearts can throw up points on the board as well and quarterback Javon Martin (13-of-25 passing, 208 yards) has all the tools…It’s one game at a time for the Falcons from here to the end of the year and getting that second win of the season is certainly within the realm of possibility.
And the winner is: St. Paul scores a big 35-28 win on homecoming night.