It didn’t go quite the way that most thought it would, but nonetheless the Staples Wreckers continued their perfect season on Saturday with a 35-10 victory over Fairfield Ludlowe on Homecoming.The Wreckers tied a 41-year-old state record by forcing eight interceptions – four of them by running back Tyler Jacobs, who also scored four touchdowns in helping the Wreckers improve to 7-0.
Jacobs was huge for Staples, especially after quarterback Chester Pajolek left the game in the first quarter with a knee injury.The start of the game immediately established just how wild a matchup it would be, as Ludlowe (0-7) began the affair by fumbling the opening kickoff and giving Staples great field position inside the 20-yard line.
Staples running back Jon Heil then proceeded to fumble the football, which was recovered by the Falcons. The streak of turnovers grew to three when quarterback Tom Hammons of Ludlowe threw a pass that was intercepted by Jacobs. It was the first of Hammons’ seven picks.
The three turnovers seen on the first three plays of this game is certainly one of the craziest starts to a game the FCIAC has seen this year.The Wreckers came up empty on another opportunity when senior Jason Mawicke missed a 36-yard field goal. Staples finally got on the board late in the first quarter when Jacobs scored from five yards out to make it 7-0.
Just when the Wreckers were getting back on track, Pajolek experienced pain in his knee following a 15-yard run.The senior quarterback, who did not return, was on crutches during the second half and had a leg brace put on following the contest.Staples and coach Marce Petroccio will hold their collective breath as Pajolek is set to get an MRI on Monday.
With Pajolek out of the game, freshman quarterback Jack Massie was forced to come into the game and the offense initially struggled, which allowed Ludlowe to get back into it.The Falcons got on the board in the second quarter on a 36-yard field goal from Christopher Kennedy to make it 7-3.On the following possession, Jacobs fumbled the football and gave the Falcons possession on the Staples’ 19.After converting on 4th-and-1 to get a 1st-and-goal, Ludlowe head coach Matt McCloskey was called for unsportsmanlike conduct, which pushed the Falcons back to the 20. Hammons was then picked off by Jacobs in the end zone.
The Wreckers did not let this opportunity slip away as Jacobs, who was in the Wildcat formation, scampered 71 yards to pay dirt to make it 14-3. Staples finally began to get their act together in the second half with Jacobs scoring on the first possession out of the locker room to make it 21-3.
Just when it looked as though the Falcons were done, receiver Ryan Moore ran the ensuing kickoff back 99 yards for a score.The touchdown by Moore was a sweet one after he had fumbled the ball to begin the game.The touchdown, however, did not faze the Wreckers. With Massie in at quarterback, Staples’ scored 14 unanswered points as the freshman threw his first career touchdown pass at the varsity level to Pat Murray in the third quarter to give the Wreckers a 28-10 lead.
The final score of the afternoon came when Jacobs returned’ Hammons’ interception 25 yards to make the final count 35-10 The senior finished the day with 138 yards on the ground.With the status of Pajolek uncertain at this point, the Wreckers now have a short week to prepare for a Friday night tussle with the Wilton Warriors on the road.