What a day at Boyle Stadium.
Woke up this morning with snow on the window and the dreadful feeling that they may not play the Class L championship game.
What a shame that would have been.
Boyle was not full and nowhere near the 10,000 that packed it on Thanksgiving in 2008 but both bleachers were over 75% filled and there were people lining the entire south end zone.
The two student sections were particularly boisterous.
If the weather did not keep you home you were treated to a special day in Stamford as New Canaan won the title with a resounding 44-12 win over their rivals.
Alex LaPolice was the star of the game along with the Rams defense.
It was only the second time I have been at a high school football game when it snowed and the previous time was just a passing shower, not the sustained snow we saw this morning.
Is there a better setting for football than in snow? And at Boyle Stadium?
People from outside Fairfield County may not care but, to the people here, Boyle is special and always will be.
It is the best setting for big games in the county.
Sure the scoreboard was not working but that sort of lent an old-timey feel to the contest. (The scoreboard should be working).
Boyle has had problems with the clock all season and did not get it fixed for this game with limited time to prepare. Thankfully it did not hurt the game at all.
- Huge shout out to FCIAC officials, including Dave Schultz, who were out with the snow blowers all game, clearing the sidelines and yard lines when they could.
Schultz even came onto the field during a timeout and cleared a spot for New Canaan kicker Peter Swindell on his 30 yard fg try.
I was told FCIAC representatives worked hard securing and getting Boyle ready when the plan to move the game due to weather came to be.
- Another shout out to Jamar Greene and his players from Stamford High who cleaned out the locker rooms Thursday so the teams could use them.
- Rams defense was once again stellar, allowing just 12 points the entire state tournament. That is no easy task when facing the best teams in the state.
- What a great job by Rob Trifone and the Blue Wave to even be here after losing so many players to graduation and being on nobody’s radar to start the season. The Wave players may not want to hear it now but they accomplished a lot this season including wins over Greenwich, Ridgefield, Hillhouse, New Canaan, Hand and Middletown. That is an impressive resume.
- New Canaan’s is even more impressive with wins over Class M champion St. Joseph (twice), Hand, Greenwich, Staples, Farmington, North Haven and Darien.
The Rams lone loss came to the Blue Wave with just 4 days to prepare after the FCIAC final. And they nearly won that, coming up 9 yards short in the quest for an unbeaten season.
Are the Rams No. 1 in the state? Who knows. I think they are the best team but totally get that Ansonia is an unbeaten state champion and the first 15-0 team in state history. I will vote New Canaan No. 1 but at the end of the day it doesn’t really matter who gets the honor.
New Canaan, Ansonia, St. Joseph and the eventual LL winner all deserve credit for great seasons.
- The win gave Lou Marinelli 9 CIAC state championships and was the Rams 19th state title overall.