Berlin football shuts out Bulkeley in season opener despite sloppy performance

Published on Saturday, 8 September 2018 17:37
Written by SHELBY IAVA

@shelbyiavaNB

HARTFORD - It couldn’t have been much easier.

The Berlin football team came, conquered and is already thinking ahead for what’s to come next week against East Catholic. Just as the Redcoats predicted, they shut down Bulkeley/HMTCA/Weaver 41-0 Saturday afternoon at Bulkeley High School.

But even though Berlin shut out its opponent, the team looked sloppy. The Redcoats were flagged 13 times for 120 yards.

“It was like the old book,” Berlin head coach Joe Aresimowicz said. “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times. We showed we have talent and a system that works. We also showed when we don’t play as a team and we don’t play our assignments we’re very bad.”

Although it was just the first game, the Redcoats reverted to last year’s ‘young’ team, which was known for making numerous mistakes each and every outing. If Berlin wants to reach the playoffs, and ultimately the state championship it covets, it knows it has to eliminate those issues.

“I think a lot of the penalties were over aggression,” Berlin quarterback Kevin Dunn said. “We came out here with a lot of adrenalin, we wanted to get after it. But we have to be smarter next time.”

“There were just too many,” Berlin tight end and kicker Giancarlo Tufano added. “No championship team, no winning team has this many penalties. We have to clean it up if we want that ring.”

But there were plenty of positives as well. The Redcoats did rack up 41 points and scored three of its seven touchdowns in the first quarter.

It was also a chance to see Dunn operate the offense in his second season as Berlin’s signal caller. Last season, Dunn was called upon to manage the game more. On Saturday, the senior show off his arm. He completed on 18 of his 27 passes for 263 yards and three touchdowns.

Larry St. Pierre was on the receiving end of two of those touchdown passes and rushed for another. Running back Alex Halkias scored twice on the ground as well.

Dunn connected with St. Pierre for a 14-yard passing touchdown five minutes left in the first quarter. Prior to that, St. Pierre rushed one yard into the end zone for the game’s first score.

“I feel like the quickness and intensity of the offense really worked to our advantage,” senior center Nick Paszczuk said. “We really tired out [Bulkeley’s] defense and we’re were able to just keep driving the ball down the field.”

“We caught 14 guys on the field on offense because of how fast we were going,” Halkias added. “We could hear them panting. Our speed really helped us out.”

Just as the first quarter was about end, Marco Scarano found the end zone on a 39-yard pass from Dunn.

Berlin closed out the quarter 20-0 over the Bulldogs.

“We knew all of our assignments on the offensive side of the ball,” Halkias said. “In terms of knowing the plays, where to run, knowing what to block, who pulling. We did that flawlessly.”

Halkias finished the afternoon with nine carries over 111 yards, including a 45-yard touchdown with 7:33 left to go in the first half.

As time expired in the half, Dunn connected with St. Pierre on a 5-yard pass as Berlin widened the gap to 34-0.

“We started off so strong in the first half,” Paszczuk said. “We came out with a lot of energy but after half time we kind of slowed down and we really let the penalties hurt us.”

A majority of the penalties were made in the third quarter. Berlin’s last touchdown didn’t come till the final quarter when Halkias rushed 10 yards into the end zone.

“It was just the mental mistakes,” Halkias said. “It wasn’t mistakes in terms of us not knowing what we’re doing, but the mental mistakes that keep coming back to haunt us.”

Shelby Iava can be reached at (860) 801-5096 or siava@newbritainherald.com

BERLIN 41, BULKELEY 0

At Bulkeley High School

Berlin (1-0)        20 14 0 7 - 41

Bulkeley (0-1)        0 0 0 0 - 0

SCORING SUMMARY

First Quarter

B-Larry St. Pierre 1 run (kick failed) 9:28

B-St. Pierre 14 pass from Kevin Dunn (Giancarlo Tufano kick), 5:04

B-Marco Scarano 39 pass from Dunn (Tufano kick), .19

Second Quarter

B-Alex Halkias 45 run (Tufano kick), 7:33

B-St. Pierre 5 pass from Dunn (Tufano kick), .9

Third Quarter

None

Fourth Quarter

B-Halkias 10 run (Tufano kick), 10:52

INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS

Rushing- Berlin: Halkias 9-111-2TD, Scarano 1-39-TD, Zach Hurbiec 4-26, Johnny Mcgeever 1-4, Dunn 1-9, St. Pierre 1-1-TD, Kyle Krupa 1-4, Josh Wood 1-(-1). Bulkeley: Adrian Wiggins-king 11-31, Anthony Regis 6-26.

Passing-Berlin: Dunn 18-2726-3TD. Bulkeley: Zahir Akbar 2-9-13, Christopher DeJesus 3-6-0.

Receiving-Berlin: Scarano 1-39, St. Pierre 4-28-2TD, Alex Halkias 5-110, Zach Hrubiec 4-49, Tufano 4-47. Bulkeley: Christopher DeJesus 4-18, Tahj Fothergill 2-(-5).



Posted in New Britain Herald, Berlin on Saturday, 8 September 2018 17:37. Updated: Saturday, 8 September 2018 17:39.