BEACON FALLS — From the opening kickoff, it was clear that the Wildcats would be in for a long night last Friday in Beacon Falls.
Set deep for the opening kick, Woodland senior Sean McAllen patiently waited for the Friday-night matchup to commence. Once the ball was in his hands, McAllen was off to the races. He outran Wilby players and sprinted 86 yards into the end zone for six points virtually untouched.
It was “mischief night” in Beacon Falls, and the Hawks had set their sights on their latest target. Wilby’s fate was sealed, as Woodland dominated en route to a 39-6 victory.
Aside from the Wildcat’s single trip to the end zone late in the fourth quarter, the Hawks (5-2) pitch a near perfect game, scoring six unanswered touchdowns and holding Wilby (0-8) within their own territory for the majority of the night.
While Wilby may have been outplayed, it was not for lack of effort, according to Woodland head coach Chris Anderson.
“I thought Wilby did some nice things tonight. They certainly have some good athletes, [and] coach is doing a great job of keeping them together over there,” Anderson said. “I thought our kids did enough to execute and to win on the scoreboard, but I think all the boys won today, on both sides.”
Woodland’s offense, led by McAllen, proved to be too much for the Wildcats. Utilizing an array of players to successfully run the ball throughout the evening, the Hawks tallied 304 yards and three of their six touchdowns on the ground.
McAllen accounted for 126 yards on 11 carries and scored three total touchdowns. Along with his 86-yard kick return touchdown, the senior running back also returned an interception thrown by Wilby’s Darrien Bell in the second quarter pushing the lead to 20-0 with 4:58 left in the first half.
McAllen scored his third and final touchdown in the middle of the third quarter after breaking a few tackles and running 30 yards to give the Hawks an insurmountable 33-0 lead. By the end of the third quarter Anderson had called the senior to the sideline, giving him the rest of the night off.
“I felt loose. I came out healthy and that’s good,” McAllen said. “We came out strong with a kick return touchdown. [We] still have a lot of things to pick up on.”
Issac Negron and Ben Nuss added touchdown runs of 15 and 25 yards, respectively, and Zach Bedryczuk found Guy Massimo for a 3-yard touchdown pass to account for Woodland’s three other touchdowns.
Defensively, the Hawks were relentless with nine sacks, two interceptions and two fumble recoveries against the Wildcats. Wilby was unable to get the ball rolling; only making it into Woodlands territory three times.
Woodland will be looking to tally another victory Friday night when they host Naugatuck (4-3) in a rivalry matchup. Friday’s game will be the third meeting that these teams will play for the coveted George Pinho Memorial Trophy, an award that holds sentimental value for the senior Hawks.