Miller carries Windsor Locks/Suffield/East Granby to victory

WINDSOR LOCKS — Running back Jarvis Miller scored two touchdowns Saturday as the Windsor Locks Raiders defeated visiting Old Saybrook-Westbrook 20-6.

The Raiders, who finished last season 1-9, are off to a 4-1 start this season

“We have a new attitude this season.  We just keep working and grinding.” Miller said of his team’s success this year.  “We are a better coached football team.”

Miller finished Saturday’s matchup with 12 carries for 135 yards and two touchdowns.  This type of performance has become routine for Miller on the year, and is a major reason for the Raiders’ success.

Old Saybrook-Westbrook started the game with a long opening drive, moving the ball all the way to the Raiders’ four yard line, but costly red-zone holding penalties pushed the Rams back and kept them off the board.

“We ran the ball well but gave away too many opportunities, especially early.”  OSW head coach Patrick Hanssen said of his team’s struggles.  “We didn’t perform when we needed to.

Locks got on the board first with a 5 yard touchdown run from Miller with 1:07 left in the first half on a drive highlighted by Miller’s magnificent 62-yard run.  The Raiders then took advantage of good field position at midfield to start the second half, scoring on Miller’s 20-yard run.

However, the Old Saybrook-Westbrook Rams continued to fight in the second half down 14-0.

“They were tough.  We had to fight hard to win this game today.” Windsor Locks head coach Marty Powers said of the visitors.

OSW threatened often in the second half behind the strong play of senior captain and running back Brett Sparaco.

“He’s a leader for us and a very good runner.” Hanssen said of Sparaco, who carried the ball 26 times for 125 yards.

Sparaco’s running put Old Saybrook-Westbrook in position for a 17-yard touchdown run from Ethan Casberg with 2:52 remaining in the third quarter.

The Rams held the Windsor Locks offense quiet in the fourth quarter and were threatening to score with under a minute left in the game.  The Raiders’ defense remained tough, however, and Khamri Thomas intercepted a pass from Old Saybrook-Westrbook’s Steve Lavoie and returned it 60 yards for a touchdown to seal the Ram’s fate.

“Our defense was strong again today,” said Powers.  “If you can hold a team to six points you will be successful.”

Jake Marconi anchored the Windsor Locks defense with 13 tackles, and William Szozda contributed with a sack.

Ago Jiminez took care of the ball for Locks and handled the offense efficiently, completing three of his five passes for 20 yards.

Powers, in his second year at the helm for the Raiders, is confident in his team’s abilities.  “We’re not there yet, but we continue to improve.  We’ve got some good players who are learning how to play the game right.

Windsor Locks travels to Cromwell next Saturday.

-Story and photos by Thomas Powers

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