Farmington clinches first playoff berth since 1999

PLAINVILLE — Farmington football head coach Chris Machol was a freshman in college the last time the Indians were in the playoffs, 14 years ago.

But thanks to a phenomenal performance by some outstanding two-way players, including Kenny Jones, the Indians won the Olde Canal Cup with a 34-0 win over Plainville Thanksgiving morning.

“The message this week, was that two years in a row we have come to Plainville needing to win and get some help,” Farmington head coach Chris Machol said. “This year, it was win and in. With our fate in our hands we like it.”

Jones had the ball in his hands early, taking the first play from scrimmage 56 yards for a touchdown, giving Farmington early momentum. The senior only had five touches, but made them count, compiling 97 yards.

The talented running and corner back also grabbed two big interceptions, and punched in a 2-point conversion during his potent Thanksgiving day.

“We have a lot of two way guys, but he is a special player,” Machol said. “A three-year starter, we find as many ways as we can to get the ball in his hands to let him do his thing. We have a bunch of weapons offensively, and it allows him to get some match ups that are favorable.”

The meat of the second half however was anything but special, as the Indians committed sloppy penalties and were unable to take advantage of Plainville mistakes.

“We dug ourselves in some holes, too many penalties,” the coach said. “I have to think were were over the 100-yard mark in penalties in the first half alone. But we settled down and started playing with composure in the second half.”

After scoring on the first play in the first half, the Indians scored on the final play of the first half, using a Colin Grattan interception to set up a Jeremy Buck touchdown toss to Anthony Carpenter for 29 yards as the clock expired.

Grattan was another two-way player with big numbers, as the senior blocked a punt early in the second half, and scored on a 16-yard run in the fourth quarter.

The second half had Farmington looking more like itself, with the Grattan blocked punt setting up a two-yard touchdown steamroll by offensive and defensive tackle Vincent Stevens, who weighs in at 304 pounds.

“We do a competition at practice, basically a goal line competition,” Machol said, explaining his reasons for using No. 70 as a running back at the goal line. “I said ‘lets see what he can do.’ Nobody could tackle him, nobody wanted to tackle him. He’s a really good athlete for his size.”

Now leading 20-0, the Indians forced a Blue Devil three-and out before putting together a short drive that saw Ivan Guadalupe score a touchdown at the 8:24 mark in the fourth quarter.

Guadalupe, another two-way senior star, compiled 114 yards on 10 carries to lead the Indians. He also punched in a two-point conversion in the shutout win.

After Grattan’s score towards he end of the fourth to up the score to 34-0, the Indians celebrated with a timid cheer, knowing that much hard work lies ahead in the short week before Tuesday’s opening round playoff game.

“They are raring to go, they are gamers,” Machol said of his squad, which will likely play No. 3 Canaan as the No. 6 seed next week. “We’re as healthy as we have been since the first day of camp. We are in a good spot, we have to prepare for whoever we play.”

“I feel that we haven’t played our best yet, that allows us to be confident,” the coach continued. But the team certainly played well enough to win the Olde Canal Cup, a memory the seniors will take with them win or lose next Tuesday.

The Indians finish their regular season at 9-2.

For more Farmington photos, click HERE!

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