I have to admit, I was a little off my game Thursday night. First, a funeral for a friend. Then about a half-dozen little things to write for Friday’s paper, which I didn’t finish until 5:20.
Oh, and the Ansonia vs. Woodland game was at 6. Though I lived a mere 20 minutes away, rush hour and game traffic made it 40 minutes.
So I got there late and missed just a few plays from scrimmage, which screwed my stats up. Plus, the Ansonia clock operators refused to post the correct down and distance on the scoreboard, further screwing me up as I tried to catch up.
(Figures. I mean this is a town whose new Superintendent directs all inquiries on a relatively simple suspension matter to her office, and then fails to return two simple phone calls seeking facts and comment. But I digress).
Luckily for me, my colleagues from all of the other players were there to help me out.
On this night, it turns out we needed to gather together a consensus because, well, Alex Thomas was on his game.
He just had the greatest night a Connecticut running back has ever had.
518 yards. Seven Touchdowns.
Let that sink in for a second.
518 yards on 44 carries.
In one game.
It broke school, league and state record for most yards in a game. More important for Alex, he broke his brother Ryan’s school record for career touchdowns. Ryan finished his great career with 78. Alex has 80.
Every time this kid touched the ball, you felt like he was going to score. It was that kind of night. One nobody will forget.
I mean, the two long touchdown runs Thomas scored to start the second half were two of the best touchdown runs you’ll ever see in a football game. And they came on his first two carries of the second half, after Woodland had closed the gap to within 34-21 at halftime.
He was simply amazing. He followed his great blockers, he sidestepped tacklers, he danced in and out of trouble, he found his hole and he was gone. Every time.
I mean, 518 yards?
That’s more than half a season for most kids.
And, trust me, this was legit.
Thomas did all of it in prime time, not garbage time, against one of the best teams in the league and a state playoff contender in Class SS.
Woodland was great, led awesome receiver in Will Volage who returned two kickoffs for touchdowns. And they were a threat to get back in the game every time he touched the ball.
Thomas, though, just wouldn’t let them. Even while trying to run out the clock, Thomas would bust loose for another touchdown. It was simply incredible.
The worst part is, I was so off my game I got absolutely no good video. Which really upsets me since Alex ran right by me on both of those backbreaking touchdown runs.
No matter, if you want to see what Thomas did, there were about 100 cameras there since this was the only game on Thursday night. I’m sure Birdseyesports will have some great ones later.
EDIT: Birdseye Sports‘ Ben Talbott was also on his game this morning because here are the highlights:
Here’s my story and then the Birdseye Sports video of the Thomas interview after the game.
After Mark Jaffe from the Republican American gets a couple of questions in, that goofy voice with the flabbergasted and rambling questions is me. Finally, Mike Pucci from the New Haven Register gets in a better one at the end.
Yes, Thomas’ answers can be boring. But he is what he is. A humble, softspoken boy who just happens to be one of the greatest backs in Connecticut history.
And Ansonia is the best team.