Gridiron preview for Oct. 10

By MICHAEL LETENDRE
STAFF WRITER
BRISTOL – In Week 5 scholastic football action, two teams are looking at probable wins while the other has to deal with one of the toughest teams in all the state.
First, Bristol Central takes on Bulkeley, a squad that was wrecked by Bristol Eastern in a forty-point blowout last week, from the friendly confines of Muzzy Field.
Next, St. Paul returns to Bristol – under the lights – but must tangle with Ansonia, one of the best squads in all of Class S.
And the only road game on Friday sees the Lancers travel to Enrico Fermi high school to square off against the winless Falcons in Enfield.
Who will come out with a victory this Friday?
Here’s the deal on each Bristol battle: 
Bristol Central (2-1) vs. Bulkeley (2-2); CCC Division II, Interdivisional showdown
Location: from Muzzy Field, Bristol
Day and Time: Friday, 7 p.m.
Last Season: Last season, during Week 5, the Rams were challenged by the Bulldogs but held on to win it, 12-7, from Dillon Stadium back on Oct. 11.
Last Week: Central slammed RHAM 40-22 this past Friday while Bulkeley was nearly assaulted by Bristol Eastern, 56-16, in Hartford.
All-Time Series: This is 32nd all-time showdown between the schools and Central leads by a huge margin. The Rams have won 24 of the 31 showdowns.
Casual facts…Central is off to a great start, winning two of their first three games with win number three on the horizon…Out of this two team equation, one squad (Central) had a pretty good Week 4 while the other (Bulkeley) showed very little…Against Bristol Eastern, Bulkeley came out throwing the ball and it was a move the Lancers weren’t expecting…But that 48-0 halftime lead by the Lancers was certainly a telling tale about what the Bulldogs’ offense could (or couldn’t) do…The Bulldogs’ running component was completely nullified by Eastern as the squad lost over 100 yards on the ground…And star back, No. 1 Javon Alston, caught seven passes for 91 yards and a touchdown but did nothing on the ground for Bulkeley…Bulldogs’ quarterback Malik Starks went 8-for-20 over the first half against Eastern but that led to just 37 total yards, no touchdowns, and even threw for a couple losses…And the defense was non-existent against the Lancers…I’m not sure how Bulkeley is going to contain Central running back D’Andre Conaway who zapped RHAM for 142 yards on 10 carries for three touchdowns…QB Noah Cruz, who is improving every week, rambled up just over 110 yards on a 6-for-6 passing performance…Keep in mind, just like Bulkeley, all of RHAM’s points were notched over the final 12 minutes of the contest…The Rams’ defense was up to the task against RHAM and Bulkeley better beware…If the Bulldogs try the same offense, throw it to the wing and make a mad dash for it or attempts long range bombs with no real accuracy, it’s going to be a long night for the outfit from Hartford.
And the winner is…Think Bulkeley bounces back? No, I don’t either. Central wins 44-20.
 
Bristol Eastern (2-2) at Fermi, Enfield (0-4) CCC Division II action
Location: from Enrico Fermi high school, Enfield
Day and Time: Friday, 7 p.m.
Last Season: Back on Friday, Oct. 11, Bristol Eastern smashed the Falcons 48-12 from Muzzy Field in Bristol. 
Last Week: Eastern destroyed Bulkeley 56-16 while Fermi got smoked by Middletown 49-13 in a contest played back on Thursday, Oct. 2.
All-Time Series: The Lancers lead the all-time series.
Casual facts…Let the tomfoolery commence….Eastern had serious work to do against Bulkeley last week and came away from that encounter 40-point victors…“We put the throttle on early,” said Eastern coach Mike Archangelo after the Bulkeley game. “We didn’t hurt ourselves tonight. It seems like we continue to hurt ourselves in important games so I told these guys the next two weeks is about us, looking in the mirror and fixing those problems and not continually beating ourselves.”…Fermi has lost 36 consecutive games and hasn’t won since the 2010 campaign and even then, the Falcons beat hapless Weaver 34-12 back on Nov. 5, 2010 (add in you own punch-line)…Look, you have to respect your opponent – no matter what the record – but to be on such a losing streak, plus the way the Lancers have battled back against Bulkeley, Fermi is in serious trouble here…This season, the Falcons have showed a willingness on the offensive end, averaging 25.5 points-per-game and certainly made offensive gains over those four contests…But on defense, forget about it….Every team this season has dropped at least 45 points on Fermi and in one game, against East Catholic, the Falcons allowed a mind-blowing 72 points…Let’s give both Eastern’s offense and defense credit in the victory over Bulkeley as solid footwork stopped the Bulldogs’ running game to near historic losses…Fermi is going to have to pull out all the tricks of the old playbook to try to fool the Lancers…Smash-mouth football will not work against Eastern…But here are the real questions? How do the Falcons contain back Gerry Ouellette who drilled Bulkeley for 132 yards on five carries? How does Fermi deal with a vicious Lancers’ defense? Do the Falcons have the offense to overcome that pesky Eastern defense?…Man, Fermi better get ready for this one…And for the first time since Week 1, Eastern will get to battle a squad on an all-weather surface.  
And the winner is…Okay, Fermi wins by 36 points by a 38-2 final. Whoops, I mean Eastern wins by 36 points, 57-21.

St. Paul (1-3) vs. Ansonia (4-0) in a Naugatuck Valley League, Copper Division showdown
Location: from St. Paul Catholic high school
Day and Time: Friday, 7 p.m.
Last Season: St. Paul and Ansonia did not tangle with each other. The squads haven’t met each other since 2010.
Last Week: The Chargers dropped the hammer on Seymour by a 43-8 final on Thursday, Oct. 2 while St. Paul fell at Woodland 30-13.
All-time NVL series: The Falcons have never beaten Ansonia – several teams are in the same boat – and are 0-2 against the Chargers. The Falcons lost 45-29 in 2009 while one year later, St. Paul dropped a tough 54-25 to Ansonia.
Casual facts: Man, what were the NVL schedule-makers thinking?…For crying out loud, when the Ansonia said something to the effect that they were going to have an “off season” in early previews of the year, give me a break…This Chargers’ squad is something to behold on both sides of the ball…Ansonia has scored at least 36 points every game this season while their defense yields just 3.5 points-per-game…Wow, this will be a challenge…Several players will run with the ball for the Chargers including Tajik Bailey, James Butler, Tyler Bagley, and Jai’Quan McKnight…Bagley and Bailey combined for 258 rushing yards against Seymour and that’s where the trouble begins and ends for Ansonia’s opponents…The Chargers can throw the ball but the ground game is where it’s at…St. Paul is going to have to find ways to dent the stingy Ansonia onslaught they will be facing…QB Pat Etter will be under extreme pressure from series one…Eli Parks did well running the ball over the last two games and maybe he can be a bit of a game-changer with his physical drives…Here’s the bottom line: Ansonia has speed, athletes and all the ability in the world…Again, this will be an epic challenge for the Falcons to overcome.
And the winner is…St. Paul wants to win this one badly but in the end, Ansonia wins this one 56-21.
Comments? Email mletendre@BristolObserver. com.football