Local commentary: It’s fall, and that means football

Local commentary: It’s fall, and that means football


October in New England, and the presence of football is tangible in the air. The Durham-Middlefield area holds the dubious reputation of being on the 50-yard line between the two great sport rivalries of New York in Boston.

So much so that when ESPN hosted its 2012 pre-game Superbowl presentation between the Giants and the Patriots, the sports network chose to broadcast right from the Coginchaug High School parking lot as the official half-way point between the two stadiums.

But whether you’re more likely to have No. 12 or No. 13 proudly displayed on the back of your shirt, there is no debate that the best football in New England can be enjoyed right here in Durham.

The Wally Camp Athletic Complex at Coginchaug H.S. is home to both the Coginchaug/Hale-Ray Blue Devils, as well as the Durham-Middlefield Falcons; our youth football and cheer program. So dust off your raccoon coat, grab a pennant and come cheer on the your local teams!

We look forward to bringing you weekly updates on the Durham-Middlefield area football this fall.

The Coginchaug/Hale-Ray Blue Devils go into their bye week with a 2-3 mark. We had big wins over Canton and H-K and tough losses to Valley, Windsor Locks and Cromwell. Our boys play with tremendous courage and pride. It is inspiring to watch them.

Coginchaug’s next home game is Saturday, Oct. 21 against Lewis Mills. Game time is 1 p.m.

The Durham Middlefield Falcons are fielding four teams this year: A squad (grades 8/9), B squad (grades 6/7), C squad (grades 4/5) and the expanding flag league (K-2).

The cheer program has an A and B squad, as well as a dominating 29-lady Falcon C squad.

The future of the cheer program is expanding, as is its cheer competition win history.

The Durham/Middlefield Falcons launched a new logo, with a slick one-sided helmet design on a matte blue finish. The updated logo has been a huge hit on T-shirts, hats and sweatshirts, and #DMFalconSightings can be seen all around town.

The next Falcon home games are this Sunday, Oct. 15 and Sunday, Oct. 22.

Game results from Sunday, Oct. 8.

A squad:

The Durham/Middlefield Falcons played tough and won a great game at home against the Wethersfield Eagles. Anthony Toth (RB), Jeremy Mangiameli (QB) and Dalton Sisk (RB) led the way offensively, all running for over 100 yards apiece. Toth had two touchdowns while Sisk and Mangiameli each had one TD.

Defensively, the Falcons managed to hold the Eagles to under 150 total yards on offense. Mangiameli had an interception while Jack Huscher, Thomas Maldanado and Hunter Matus each had a sack.

The Falcons tackled very well throughout the game. Also making big contributions to the win were Nate Lowry, Blake Sartor, Anthony Davoren, Tyler Stagon, Seth Overton, Dylan Quincy, Kaden Altwell and Jim Ahern. All of these players contributed by making great blocks and tackling very well.

Head coach Peter Ladas called his team’s performance the “best overall game of the season thus far and a great team effort.”

The Falcons improved to 2-3.

B squad:

The Durham/Middlefield Falcons faced a challenging game against Wethersfield and came away with a 25-7 loss. The early-morning torrential rain provided increased difficulty for ball handling, as the running game increased.

The Falcons’ touchdown resulted from a hard run from Tyler Doyle in the second quarter.

C squad:

The Durham/Middlefield Falcons came off their 2016 league championship year with a good host of returning players and a great influx of fresh talent. Led by high-scoring Tyler Ufferlidge on offense and the play-making Matt Francesco on defense, the Falcons are 1-3 halfway into the season.

Flag football:

The Durham/Middlefield Falcons flag football team has more than doubled in size since last year, and has brought its roster to several jamborees where 6 to 12 teams from several towns play in 15-minutes scrimmages. The amazing level of play among such young athletes is astounding, as is the quick learning curve of boys that are learning a love of the game.

This growing squad is the future of football in our town. Quarterback Jayden Costa and wide receiver Brodie Manning have stunned the league with their well-executed pass plays, something rarely seen at even higher levels of play.


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