|Wolcott faces a very stern test from Ansonia in Matt Hove's first game as head coach.|
Quarterback Michael Polzella hopes to have a big game for the Eagles. (Copyright, Sports on CT-69, file)
Wolcott first-year head coach Matt Hove will be in a trial by fire in his first game Friday night. The Eagles have the unenviable task of the being the season opener for the perennial power Ansonia Chargers at 7 p.m. at Nolan Field. It will be interesting to see how Wolcott plays against an Ansonia team that hasn't given them much of a chance over the years. The Eagles will depend on veteran signal-caller Michael Polzella to control the offense while the defense will need to be ready for the strong -- as always -- running attack of the Chargers.
Giant girls soccer game
Opening day, and two division title hopefuls go at each other on Oronoke Road. Holy Cross girls soccer hosts St. Paul at 3:45 p.m. in what should be a terrific season-opening game. The Falcons have plenty of returning talent and depth, but the Crusaders aren't short on weapons either. This should be fun.
Interesting NVL boys matches on the pitch
St. Paul hosts Kennedy at 3:45 p.m. in Bristol. The Eagles plan on being in the thick of things in the league again, despite many graduations. The Falcons are young but second-year head coach Joe Abele hopes that they will be a feisty bunch.
At 6 p.m., Wolcott hosts Sacred Heart on the turf of Joe Monroe Field. The Eagles are experienced, plus they return their top scorer and goalkeeper. The Hearts have the numbers, and they are coming off of their first Waterbury Soccer Jamboree title. Can Sacred Heart ride the momentum? We'll see.
Just a few home football games this weekend
Most of the area gridiron squads are on the road in Week 1.
There's three matchups of area teams: Wilby at WCA (Ray Snyder Sr. Field) Friday at 7 p.m. Friday; Holy Cross at Kennedy on Saturday at 1 p.m. at Snyder; and St. Paul at Sacred Heart/Kaynor Tech on Saturday at 6 p.m. at Snyder.
WCA, which lost two major offensive contributors to prep school, tries to get off to a good start against a Wilby team that just wants its long losing streak to end.
On Saturday afternoon, defending NVL Brass champion Kennedy plays against Holy Cross, a team that could win it this season. This should be a fun matchup, especially in offensive contrasts. The Eagles want to run, run, run. The Crusaders would like to spread the ball out with quarterback Corey Fappiano. Something has to take control.
Speaking of ground games, St. Paul hopes to have its running like a freshly-oiled machine against SH/KT. The Falcons bring back several strong linemen, their quarterback, and their leading rusher. As always, St. Paul will look for other parts to fit in its schemes. For SH/KT, it's the first game under new head coach Thomas Allen. The Hearts lost players to graduation and two major pieces to prep school, so it'll be interesting to see how the co-op fares.
Crosby is also home in Week 1. The Bulldogs host Woodland Regional at 7 p.m. at Jimmy Lee Stadium. Crosby has a new quarterback, senior Alberim Klenja. The Bulldogs will have a good running attack, but Klenja will need to make plays at some point. Woodland is expected to be an improved bunch under second-year head coach Chris Moffo, a graduate of Wolcott High School.