PLAINVILLE - Could the Plainville High football team rebound from a 1-4 start to finish the season at or above .500?
The Blue Devils (3-4) will take another step toward answering that question when they hit the road to take on Tolland (4-3) tonight.
After going winless last season, Plainville is currently riding a two-game winning streak with a pair of impressive victories, including a 49-6 rout over winless East Catholic (0-7) last week.
“We played as close to a 48-minute game as we have so far,” Plainville head coach Tim Shea said. “We were clicking in all three phases, and we did some things this week that we’ve had problems doing in the past.”
The team scored on all six of its chances in the red zone - an area that had been a major problem in the first half of the season. The Blue Devils also did a better job of stopping the run and executing on special teams, Shea said.
The modest winning streak has helped put some positive energy into the locker room.
“[There’s] a lot of positive momentum. It’s definitely keeping everyone together. We’re just on a roll now. We want to get on a roll and finish the season positive,” senior Nick Cianchetti said.
“It’s definitely a better feeling. Everyone wants to win. And to come off a tough season last year, this year’s going pretty well. We’re just trying to keep it up.”
Finishing at or above .500 would definitely be a positive result for the season, he added.
“Coming off an 0-10 season junior year, there’d be no better feeling. It feels like all the work you put in in the offseason, finally this is a step forward for the program,” Cianchetti said. “I think we’re all confident. Everyone’s just going to come out and play their hardest. We’ve been practicing hard. We’re trying to just finish it off, because us seniors, we’ve only got so much time left.”
Tolland will likely pose a challenge to Plainville.
“Tolland’s a very good football team,” Shea said. “They do a lot of good stuff up there, and we’ve got our work cut out for us. We just hope to go up there ready, and see if we can take that next step.”
The Eagles from Tolland are led by sophomore quarterback Ryan Carlson, who had 430 yards rushing in the team’s first six games, but did not play last week against Berlin. Instead, junior John Glick rushed for a season-high 98 yards on 29 carries against the Redcoats.
While Carlson is the team’s primary passer, throwing for 430 yards on 33-for-78 passing, sophomore Brady Gordon took over QB duties against Berlin, connecting on two of eight passes for just eight yards. With 17 catches for 275 yards, senior Jonny Lindquist leads the receiving corps.
“We’ve got our work cut out for us this week, because they run the ball well,” Shea said. “If we do everything we’re supposed to do, we execute, minimize some mistakes and have a little luck, I think we’ll be all right. But we’ve got to do our part.”