Howdy Folks


This is the quietest it's been here in about a year ... go figure. Remmy and I hope you're all alive and well.

Basketball season's going well, for those of you who pay attention. For once, the suburban schools are actually holding their own a little bit. It's nice.

As always, whenever you have any rumors to address or random comments to make, feel free.

2010 All-Valley Team

The 2010 All-Valley Team has been named.

Congratulations to the players.

2010 NVL Football Blog Awards

Football Awards

Best Team: Naugatuck Greyhounds. Despite losing in the state quarterfinals, the Hounds won the NVL on Thanksgiving at Jarvis Stadium and scored points in bunches this season with, arguably, one of the best group of skill players across the state. Naugy had the offense, led by quarterback Erich Broadrick, and the defense, led by defensive lineman Aaron Echevarria and an outstanding secondary, while taking the personality of their confident coach, Rob Plasky.

Best Brass Division Game: Ansonia vs. Derby, Week 6. Most predicted Ansonia to beat Derby fairly easily, but the Raiders jumped on top of the Chargers quickly, leading 20-7 after the first quarter and 26-13 at the half, thanks to excellent performances by Ray Kreiger, Jacob Tomczak, and Rashawn Hendricks. But Ansonia stormed back in the second half and Montrell Dobbs made his impact with a 3-yard touchdown to make it 32-31 and the two-point conversion to give Ansonia a one-point lead with two minutes left. Kreiger drove Derby down the field, but Arkeel Newsome intercepted his last-ditch pass to give the Chargers the Brass Division title.

Best Copper Division Game: Woodland vs. Sacred Heart, Week 9. Woodland needed this game to win the Copper Division title. The Hawks came from behind and took the lead but Sacred Heart’s Rohan Ifill led his team down the field and scored the game-winner to strengthen the Hearts’ chances at making the Class S playoffs. The game ended with a Jack DeBiase pass to Rahmi Rountree that resulted in a fumble (forced by Ifill) at the Sacred Heart 2-yard line. Sacred Heart recovered with a couple of seconds remaining to seal the victory, which allowed Naugatuck to take back the Copper Division title with a win over Holy Cross the following night.

Best Upset: Naugatuck’s 38-20 win over Ansonia at Jarvis Stadium for the NVL championship. The Greyhounds pulled the upset over the Chargers for the first time since 2001 to win their first league title and clinch their first playoff berth in nine years. The Thanksgiving win was Naugy’s first win at Jarvis Stadium since 1986.

Best Play: Jack DeBiase’s pick-six against Naugatuck. DeBiase intercepted a pass by Erich Broadrick and took it 96 yards to the house to beat an undefeated Naugatuck team in Week 8. The interception prevented the Hounds from gaining any momentum and was largely responsible for the Hounds’ only loss in the regular season. It was the best play of a great season by DeBiase, who rushed for 1,577 yards and 14 touchdowns while throwing for 948 yards and 11 scores.

Rookie of the Year: Arkeel Newsome, freshman, WR/RB, Ansonia. Newsome scored six TDs in a game against Wilby with Dobbs out with an injury. Newsome also made an impact on special teams and in the defensive backfield. Newsome finished the year with 800 yards rushing (averaging 11.4 yards/carry) and 309 yards receiving, resulting in16 total touchdowns (11 rushing, 4 receiving, 1 kickoff return).

Underclassman of the Year: Brenden Lytton, junior, RB, Torrington. Lytton had one of the best single-season rushing performances in league history and did so with little fanfare. He rushed for 2,353 yards and 27 TDs and set a state record by scoring nine touchdowns in a blowout of Wilby.

Most Improved Player: Ray Kreiger, junior, QB, Derby. Kreiger put Derby in a good position for the first time in years by helping the Raiders to a 5-5 record and a second-place finish in the Brass Division. Kreiger threw for 1,939 yards and 21 touchdowns and almost engineered an upset over Ansonia that would have given Derby the Brass title. His main target, Jacob Tomczak, didn’t play in three of Derby’s games this season or else Kreiger’s numbers may have been even better.

Most Improved Team: Sacred Heart. Improving from a 2-8 record in 2009 to a playoff-bound squad in 2010, the Hearts showed plenty of fight and had some of the best skill players in the league at their disposal. First-year coach Chris Ortiz had a big impact on this team’s success, leading the Hearts to their first playoff berth since 1991.

Best Offensive Line: Torrington. The Raiders’ line, led by all-stater Dean Tsopanides, paved the way for Lytton to have one of the best seasons in recent memory. Even though teams knew the run was coming, Lytton was able to run for well over 2,000 yards on the season.

Best Defensive Line: Woodland. The Hawks were the best defense this season in part due to their excellent front. Led by defensive end Ian Bures, nose tackle Jeff Holder, and others, Woodland was able to hold the league’s best backs under their season averages and made quarterbacks hurry to throw.

Coach of the Year: Rob Plasky, Naugatuck. While Tom Brockett did an outstanding job with a young Ansonia team, Chris Ortiz led Sacred Heart back to the playoffs in his first year, and George French got some excitement back in Derby, how can anyone discount Plasky’s coaching job in 2010? People may not like his overconfident style, but the longest-tenured coach in the league won his first league title since his rookie season by helping his offense gel and his defense make big plays. This all came after nearly losing his job in the offseason.

Best Quarterback: Rohan Ifill, senior, QB, Sacred Heart. The gunslinger not only used the strongest arm in the NVL to his advantage, but also showed off his running ability on designed runs or when things broke down. He had numerous 300-yard games in the air, including a 400-yard performance in the Class S quarterfinals. Without him, Sacred Heart would not have won more than two games.

Best Wide Receiver: David Coggins, sophomore, WR, Sacred Heart. Simply put, Coggins is a star and the best pure receiver in the league. With two years ahead of him in that type of offense at Sacred Heart, expect even bigger numbers from the talented wideout. Coggins caught 78 balls for 1,417 yards and nine touchdowns. He has the hands, speed, and quickness needed to play at the D-1 level. He will be playing on Saturdays.

Best Two-Way Lineman: Aaron Echevarria, senior, OL/DL, Naugatuck. Echevarria was one of the best offensive linemen in the state, helping pave the way for an excellent Greyhound running game and protect Erich Broadrick. But his biggest impact may have come on defense against Ansonia when he recorded five sacks to help the Hounds beat the Chargers.

Best Special Teams Player: Reuban Berger, senior, DB, Naugatuck. Berger wasn’t used much on offense until the last few weeks of the season, but his impact on defense and special teams was impossible to ignore. Berger was the most dangerous return man in the league, scoring five return touchdowns on the season.

Best Hit: Zach Plourde’s crush on Dom Gambino. We’re not going to take into account any blindside hits on punt/kickoff return. The Woodland linebacker’s hit on the Wolcott quarterback was nasty. Here’s the video:

“WTF” Moment of the Year: Knee-gate at Woodland. On a crucial play late in the wild game between the Hawks and Ansonia, Woodland quarterback Jack DeBiase took a shotgun snap on 4th-and-goal with his knee near the ground, which was ruled as touching the grass by the officials. The call allowed the Chargers to take over on downs and hang on for the win.

The NVL Heisman Award: Montrell Dobbs, senior, RB, Ansonia. Quite frankly, no one came close to Dobbs’ stats this season. His leadership skills showed all season, as Dobbs put his teammates, coaches, and fellow Chargers on his back for the ride to the Class S title game at Rentschler Field. Dobbs finished the year with 3,445 rushing yards and 45 rushing touchdowns. He finished his three-year varsity career with 5,471 rushing yards and 67 touchdowns.

A few other awards have repeat winners. Here they are:

Offensive MVP: Montrell Dobbs
Defensive MVP: Jack DeBiase
Best Running Back: Montrell Dobbs
Best Single-Game Offensive Performance: Brenden Lytton’s nine TD, 61 points against Wilby
Best Single-Game Defensive Performance: Aaron Echevarria’s five sacks against Ansonia

Blogger Awards

Cutest Couple: hound wild and Seeing Red. These two (or one) hopped on the board in the middle of the season and have done a nice job stirring up controversy in each of the town’s they represent. They complement each other nicely.

Most Likely to Curse on Camera (without warning): The Source. Nuff said.

Most Likely to Say the Wrong Thing at the Wrong Time: Seeing Red. No word on how the Wolcott investigation of Seeing Red is, but between his risqué comments on his personal behavior to his apparent joy for when things turn south in Wolcott, he has a knack for pouring salt on open wounds and infuriating some around him.

Most Likely to Win Big in Vegas: spreadofan12. spreado had the best winning percentage of all bloggers this year, going 45-11 for a .804 winning percentage through the playoff quarterfinals. This was only beaten by Remmy’s 63-15 record for a .808 percentage. Honorable mention goes to believer6, who was the only blogger besides Kyle and Remmy to make predictions every week.

Most Likely to Directly Affect a Game’s Outcome: coach32. coach32 is one of the bloggers who is a member of the Torrington coaching staff and has the ability to change the offensive looks by the Red Raiders. He doesn’t care how much the Torrington parents complain about play-calling or how much other bloggers complain about coaches being on the board. coach32 always means business and would also be in line for the starting quarterback position on the All-NVL Blog team.

Most Annoying Blogger: daddywags. The guy has no control of the English language from what he’s displayed on the blog and his world ends at Ansonia’s borders. He criticizes supporters and opponents, coaches and players, fans and parents—whoever makes him upset on a particular day. However, many of his comments do not make sense and often they are very difficult to even read. People who pick on others, particularly while remaining anonymous, are quite pathetic.

Blogger of the Year: Joe the Shot. Joe has a good balance of supporting his Red Raiders while being able to pretty accurately survey the landscape of the league. He doesn’t necessarily pull punches, but he tells the truth in a respectable manner. His comments are not ones to be skipped over as many are.

New Haven Register All-State

The New Haven Register released its 79th annual all-state awards today. Here are all the league players honored.

First Team
Montrell Dobbs, RB, Ansonia
Dean Tsopanides, OL, Torrington
Jack DeBiase, DB, Woodland

Second Team
Brenden Lytton, RB, Torrington
David Coggins, WR, Sacred Heart
Aaron Echevarria, OL, Naugatuck
Ruben Berger, KR, Naugatuck

Honorable Mention
Rohan Ifill, QB, Sacred Heart
Ray Kreiger, QB, Derby
CJ Monroe, OL, Wolcott
Ryan Peloquin, OL, St. Paul
Jacob Tomczak, WR, Derby
Devin Zeller, P, St. Paul
Zach Salazar, LB, Derby
Tyler Conklin, DB, Naugatuck
Matt Quatrano, DB, Watertown

Dobbs was also named the Register's MVP. Here are the links to check out the full teams and the feature on Dobbs.

NH Register All-State First Team
NH Register All-State Second Team, Third Team, Honorable Mention
Montrell Dobbs feature

That caps the last of the 2010 all-state teams. We'll still have the All-Valley team and the NVL Blog Awards coming out this month.

Happy New Year, everyone.