Glastonbury conquers snow, Simsbury

GLASTONBURY — What started out as an offensive explosion by Glastonbury’s Donevin O’Reilly in a 41-7 win over Simsbury Saturday night quickly turned into a senior night slip and slide, with a blanket of snow blanketing the field at halftime creating a winter wonderland for the players on both sides.

“We walked out the door and I said to my coaches ‘have we been in the locker room for like a month? What’s the deal?’” Glastonbury head coach Scott Daniels said. “It kind of changed the complexion of the game but it was a cool way to finish.”

The Tomahawks, whose 10-1 record will net them a home playoff game in December, scored less than a minute into the game, as O’Reilly scored his first of three touchdowns on a 17-yard run.

He followed that up with 54-yard run just four minutes later, giving Glastonbury a 14-0 lead early over Simsbury on the final game of the Trojan’s season.

“Donevin has been getting it done the last couple of weeks,” the coach said, “and that’s a credit to the line. And when something is not there he makes guys look bad on defense, he can make plays.”

In all, the junior ran 13 times for 169 yards and scored a third time on a 33-yard run at the1:54 mark in the second quarter. Clearly O’Reilly was on his game. But the offensive line made it easy for him.

“That’s the way it goes with the offensive line,” Daniels said. “They never get the talk but the second half of the season they have done their job, we have established the run and we were more balanced.”

Throwing the ball effectively, as always was quarterback Jalen Ollie, who was 9-for-18 in the air with 135 yards and three touchdowns.

His strikes to the endzone were caught by Ethan Ericson, a 14-yard pass in the first, Joseph Nuzzolo, a 4-yard catch in the second, and Kyran McKinney-Crudden.

The touchdown to McKinney-Crudden was particularly memorable as the pass came just seconds after Simsbury’s Noah Lamoth returned a Glastonbury fumble 89 yards for a touchdown on the snowy field.

McKinney-Crudden’s 40-yard touchdown catch was just punctuation on what was perhaps the senior’s best game of the year.

“Kyran was a monster on defense,” Daniels said. “He had 13 tackles, he was a stud tonight.”

Among the 13 tackles, three were tackles for a loss and one was a sack. He also collected a Simsbury fumble in the first half. His performance was right on par with the Senior Night designation for the game Saturday.

“They will go out with some memories of this,” Daniels said. “Every senior on our club played tonight which was awesome.”

For Simsbury, which finishes the year at 2-9, it was a rebuilding campaign that allowed several players the opportunity to grow. Next year should be much brighter for the Trojans.

“A season like this, last year we were very good we were second in the league,” Simsbury head coach Jeff Osborn said. “But its not easy, it’s work work work. I don’t think there is any team in the state that played five playoff qualifiers this year. [Glastonbury] was just another good team.”

The Trojans only gained 32 yards on offense, with 28 coming on a fake punt in the second half.

“Playing D-I football, we are banged up,” Osborne said. “We are down ten guys, playing sophomores, we don’t have a lot of experience. A lot of young guys were able to learn what the league was like.”

The Tomahawks will have to wait for the end of the Thanksgiving break to learn their playoff opponent, but a positive atmosphere in the Glastonbury locker room will keep the team ready for the December 3 date with whomever they are tasked with facing.

“I know people talk about it,” Daniels said, “but we take it one at a time. If we look ahead to anyone, that’s when we get beat. These guys, they feel special. They are good character guys, but by the same token there are some characters. They are fun, they work hard and when they step on the field they get the job done.”

For more Glastonbury and Simsbury photos click HERE!

All photos by Erika Studer

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