Killingly football team fights to the end

By Denise Coffey - Staff Writer
Killingly - posted Mon., Dec. 2, 2013
Michael Elsey powers past the Pride for a big gain. Photos by D. Coffey.
Michael Elsey powers past the Pride for a big gain. Photos by D. Coffey.

The annual Thanksgiving Day football game between Killingly High School and the Quinebaug Valley Pride drew a big crowd at KHS. They had shown up to pay their respects, as well as see a game that promised good running backs, young talent and solid defensive play.  

The opening ceremonies featured a Color Guard and a tribute to former Killingly star running back Jay-R Richeeds, who passed away this year. He was remembered as a great team member and friend. In 2011 he rushed for 1,199 yards while scoring 121 points for the Redmen. He was named an “All Bulletin” selection by the Norwich-based paper. The emotional memorial was attended by Richeeds’ family and friends as well as KHS alumni and former players.

Coach Chad Neal started freshman Kyle Derosier at quarterback. Derosier returned from a hip injury that had him sidelined for part of the season. All-State running back Tyler Stucke led the rushing attack, even though he was hampered by an injury that has plagued him all season.

After a quiet first half, the Redmen came out controlling the second half. Neal switched up the quarterback position to keep the Pride on their heels. Nick Hewitt went in for Derosier. He connected with senior tight end Troy Waterman on a 32-yard pass that brought them to the Pride’s 5-yard line. That play was the momentum the Redmen needed to strike for six points. Nobody could stop Stucke as he drove into the Pride’s end zone for Killingly’s first touchdown.

Stucke had a strong fourth quarter and in spite of the quarterback switch, Derosier made some key completions in the first half. Hewitt was named Most Outstanding Player for the Redmen.

The game ended on the 2-yard line as the Redmen ran short of time. Despite the cold, the crowd stayed through the last goal-line stand and exciting finish. The Pride held on to win 14-6.

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