By MICHAEL LETENDRE
BRISTOL – The St. Paul Catholic football’s rushing attack did-in the squad from Oxford on Wednesday, Nov. 23 as the Falcons zipped up a 44-22 win from McPhee Field in Bristol.
The victory propelled the Falcons to an excellent 7-3 ledger overall to end the year, the program’s best record since 2009 – the last time the outfit went to the playoffs (think Byron Jones and a near upset at New Canaan, a 14-13 loss).
The running game was in full effect as St. Paul Catholic’s wishbone offense shredded the Wolverines for over 450 yards as the Falcons’ big four made mad dashes all night long for huge gains.
Senior Damien Rabis led the charge with 134 yards on 11 carries and two touchdowns while fellow senior Chris Dionne added two scores on 11 rushes for 68 yards.
Junior Kevin Ashworth needed just four carries to tally up 112 yards and a score and junior Connor Bogdanski scooped up 118 yards on 10 carries and a touchdown.
In all, 37 rushes – including a 19 yard burst from John Ivers – led to 451 total rushing yards and once all-purposes yards were added in to those impressive numbers, the totals jump to 509 yards on the evening.
It was a very offensive evening by the home team, a great way for the senior crew to end their scholastic run.
Defensively, St. Paul Catholic had numerous standouts as Oxford was limited to just the three scores overall.
Dom Aiello capped off a sensational senior campaign with a team-leading seven tackles while Eric Langland added four over the winning effort.
Joey Aiello railed up three tackles while several other athletes – including Ivers and Christian Peterson – each tallied two tackles in the final game of the campaign.
Oxford (3-7) led late in the second period but once Rabis scampered in the goal for a magnificent 63 yard touchdown, the Falcons led for good at 22-15.
Ashworth made an 86 yard burst for a score in the first period and when Bogdanski rushed in a TD on a 27 yard jaunt, the Falcons were up on the scoreboard by a 14-0 push.
In the second frame, Oxford’s Dylan Maverick connected with Cayden Mitchell for a 19-yard touchdown reception and when Julian Ferrante ran in a nine yard score, the Wolverines amped up a 15-14 edge late in the stanza.
And then the Falcons, ahead by seven points on the scoreboard, ended the fray by notching three straight TD’s to put the contest on ice.
Dionne went for back-to-back scores as his rushes of four and five yards led the home squad to a 36-15 cushion by the completion of three quarters.
Over the final twelve minutes of play, Rabis eventually scored on a 32 yard sprint and late in the fourth, St. Paul Catholic’s 44-15 tally was too much for Oxford to overcome in the end.
Comments? Email mletendre@BristolObserver. com.