Wolverines football facing Class L opponents this season

By Janice Steinhagen - Staff Writer
Griswold - posted Tue., Sep. 27, 2011
The Griswold High School football team is 1-1 for the season after its 21-14 loss to Fairfield Prep Sept. 23. Photos by Janice Steinhagen.
The Griswold High School football team is 1-1 for the season after its 21-14 loss to Fairfield Prep Sept. 23. Photos by Janice Steinhagen.

With a bye on their schedule this week, the Griswold High School varsity football team stands at 1-1 for the season, after winning its season opener against Bacon Academy but dropping a 21-14 heartbreaker to Fairfield Prep in an intermittent downpour Sept. 23.

Head coach Glenn LaBossiere said he expected a fight from Fairfield Prep. “They’re a tough team. They’re an LL school – that’s the biggest class in the state,” he said.

The teams stood at a 6-6 tie at halftime, and Fairfield Prep took a 13-6 lead in the third quarter. Senior Zach Wood returned a blocked punt for a touchdown in the fourth quarter, putting Griswold ahead 14-13, but Fairfield Prep picked up a touchdown and a safety with less than three minutes on the clock.

The Wolverines face a tough schedule once they get back onto the field Oct. 8, at Woodstock. As the season progresses, they’ll face Class L schools like New London and East Lyme.

“We play a lot of bigger schools this year,” LaBossiere said. “But our kids are up to the task. They play hard and they play well.”

Last year’s Wolverine season record was 6-4. LaBossiere lost 10 of his seniors last year to graduation – a typical number, he said. Chief among the losses was running back and linebacker Tony Velasquez. Sophomore Harrison Bernard is stepping in to fill Velasquez’ linebacker shoes, and several other players are taking up the slack at running back.

This year’s team boasts 14 seniors on the roster, 10 of them returning from last year’s team. Senior place kicker Ben LaPlante is playing varsity for the first time this year, and earned the Wolverines three extra points in his debut game against Bacon.

Overall, 20 team members are familiar faces from last season. One returning player – senior starting quarterback Derek Ward – is sitting out the early games, after breaking a fibula in the preseason. LaBossiere said that he’s expected to rejoin the line-up at Woodstock. In his absence, sophomore Adam Davis is anchoring the team’s offense. He proved no slouch, throwing for 144 yards and two touchdowns in his first career start against Bacon. “He’s a pretty good back-up,” said LaBossiere.

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