TORRINGTON – These guys mean business.
The Naugatuck Greyhounds answered critics skeptical of their opening-week blowout of Seymour by taking a long ride to Copper Division rival Torrington and smoking the Red Raiders, 43-21.
Senior quarterback Erich Broadrick led the way again with a pair of passing touchdowns and another rushing score, anchoring for the second week the most explosive offense in the Naugatuck Valley League.
“He’s a three-year starter,” Naugatuck head coach Rob Plasky said. “I told him, you’re not here to run the offense; you’re here to win games now. He’s in the position to win games for us.”
Win it he did. Broadrick’s yardage numbers (92 pass yards and 20 rush yards) might not be impressive, but make no mistake—he’s what makes the Garnet and Grey offense go.
Of course, Broadrick has plenty of help with probably the most athletic group of skill position players in the NVL.
Broadrick found senior wide receiver Reuban Berger and senior running back Andrew Cirino for long touchdown hook-ups while Cirino, senior wide receiver/running back Marquan Williams, and senior running back Shawn Freeney also scored on the ground.
Not a bad stable of athletes—and those names didn’t even include players such as Tyler Conklin, Dashawn Wingate, Nakeem Robinson, Jamaal Gee, and Jake Yourison.
“It’s awesome,” Broadrick said of the weapons he has at his disposal. “Everybody has a part in this offense. Everything’s working out for us and it’s awesome.”
“You look at our offense and it was phenomenal tonight,” Plasky said. “Our offense didn’t get a lot of touches on the ball because our defense was out on the field for a long time. Torrington’s a good team. We knew that coming in. But we also knew we were gonna put points on the board and we’re gonna. We have a lot of weapons.”
Naugatuck faced an early deficit when Torrington running back Brendon Lytton took a handoff 75 yards for a touchdown on the Raiders’ first play from scrimmage. That run came after Naugy wasted a 69-yard opening kickoff return by Williams when they couldn’t score from the 8-yard line.
The Hounds’ second possession was equally as bad when a botched snap led to a turnover. But Naugy’s defense took over from there, allowing just two first downs for the rest of the half.
That allowed the floodgates to open on offense, starting with Broadrick’s 40-yard touchdown strike to Berger after a 38-yard run by Yourison, tying the game at 7.
The defense forced another three-and-out, but junior linebacker Mike Schebell blocked Lytton’s punt to give the Hounds great field position at Torrington’s 30. Two plays later, Cirino ran untouched 21 yards to the end zone for a 13-7 Naugatuck lead.
“If I have a bunch of guys who can run the ball behind me just as well as I do, I get more breaks and I’m fresher,” Cirino said. “You see how it works. We’ve put up 40-something, 50-something points in two games.”
It was mostly smooth sailing once the borough boys had the lead as they never trailed again and answered every Torrington touchdown with a big play of their own. Naugatuck’s last four touchdowns came on gains of 42, 39, 1, and 43 yards.
The offense looks flashy, but Broadrick doesn’t give all the credit to his skill players.
“The offensive line is doing a hell of a job,” he said. “I couldn’t ask for anything more from them. I have all the time in the world to get the ball off, and everything’s working out.”
After a convincing win over one of the league’s better squads, it might be easy for Naugatuck to get ahead of itself. But Plasky isn’t going there.
“[This win] puts us playing Derby next week,” Plasky said. “That’s it. We’ve learned from the past with injuries and all that, we can only take one game at a time. We’re treating every game like a state championship game.”