Stonington Borough, CT
Mystic Chamber of Commerce
Noank Historical Society
STONINGTON — It’s official, the Stonington High football team is on a roll.
Harry Calmar scored four touchdowns and the Bears romped 47-20 over ECC Large Division Bacon Academy for their fifth straight win in Friday’s non-league game.
Calmar is developing into quite a second weapon out of the backfield opposite of Zach Poirier.
The senior halfback rushed for 168 yards on 15 carries in addition to his four scores and has accumulated 346 yards on the ground in his last two games.
Calmar helped open up what was a one-score game with two big runs in the third quarter.
On the third play of the third period, Calmar took the handoff straight up the middle, waited patiently for his blocking to set up, then accelerated to the end zone for a 52-yard touchdown, which made the score 26-14.
He gave all the credit to his offensive line.
“The wedge, the linemen all rest on each other,” Calmar said. “That (play) just relies on how much they get after it.
“If they get low and open it up, it’s wide open and I don’t even get touched on the play.”
The Bears regained possession after the Bobcats (2-5) turned the ball over on downs at the Stonington 32-yard line.
Five plays later the Bears were on the Bacon 37-yard line and Calmar had his number called again.
The senior tailback took the handoff from quarterback Divante White, cut right and raced past the second-level defenders for a 37-yard score which, after a 2-point conversion, put Stonington up 34-14.
“They (Bacon Academy) have great linebackers like (Tom LaSarcina),” Calmar said. “Last week (against East Lyme) our offensive line played great, this week they played really smart football. When (LaSarcina) adjusted, the offensive line adjusted, too, and that was really the key to our success.”
Calmar capped the scoring with an 18-yard touchdown run and scored on an 11-yard run in the first quarter to give Stonington a 13-7 lead.
Stonington coach A.J. Massengale said that Calmar and Poirier are both dangerous because of their ability to do the little things right.
“They both work really hard at it,” Massengale said. “There’s a lot of subtle nuances to what they do and they both do it well. That’s what everyone wants to be able to do, which is threaten all parts of the field.”
A couple of big Calmar runs aside, the Bears’ offense was far more methodical and sustained than in past weeks.
The Bears (5-2) had scoring drives of seven, nine and 11 plays in the first half alone.
Massengale said that possession-style offense was by design.
“They (Bacon Academy) do a lot of things and they can really stress a defense a lot,” he said. “We were really trying to get and maintain possession of the football and that puts a lot of strain on a defense which is why we really wanted to establish some things on offense.”
Despite a good end result, the game didn’t start out great for the Bears.
After stuffing Bacon Academy’s Steve Kardys for consecutive no-gains, Bobcats’ quarterback Nate Kozlowski hit Jake Bartha on a screen play that went 65 yards for a touchdown.
The score gave Bacon an early 7-0 lead.
Even after knocking Kozlowski out of the game in the second quarter, the Bobcats still had success throwing the ball against the Bears’ defense.
Backup quarterback Sean Kelly connected twice with Ryan Duclos for touchdowns and Bacon Academy passed for 237 yards.
East Lyme passed for more than 200 yards Oct. 25 against the Bears, but Massengale didn’t see the big yardage totals as a manifestation of a larger problem.
“Our run defense has improved, but I wouldn’t say our pass defense has gotten worse,” he said. “It’s just that teams have been throwing the ball on us. We’re trying to get better at that every week like we’re trying to get better at everything else.”
White threw two touchdown passes, a 27-yarder to Bow Johnson to tie the score 7-7 in the first quarter and a 14-yard strike to Poirier in the second quarter which made it 20-7.
Poirier also had a 25-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter.
The Bears host Ledyard Friday at 6:30 p.m. in a huge ECC Medium Division tilt.
“Ledyard is the best team we’ve played by far,” Massengale said. “They have a lot of dangerous players on that team and we’re going to have our hands full.”