Mill River welcomes Woodstock in a Division III showdown. Champlain Valley heads to Middlebury for a Division I clash.
Two matchups with intrigue that headline the Week 5 high school football slate. Consider:
* The teams involved are all undefeated at 4-0.
* Depending on the outcomes, Woodstock and Middlebury can maintain their top spots in the QPR standings, or CVU and Mill River can overtake them.
* Mill River and CVU are both trying to avenge blowout losses from a year ago.
The Tigers, who ended Hartford’s 27-game winning streak earlier this month, have allowed just 13 points this season. Quarterback Austin Robinson directs a run-first, balanced attack.
CVU, meanwhile, has also relied on defense as it has pulled away with strong second halves. Quarterback Steele DuBrul and Jason Cora are among the key players for the Redhawks.
“We haven’t been lighting it up in the first half, it just takes a while to get cooking,” CVU coach Jim Provost said. “We can’t give a team like Middlebury more opportunities … and we have to be more consistent offensively.”
CVU and Middlebury meet at 7 p.m. tonight.
The Minutemen and Wasps square off at 2 p.m. Saturday in North Clarendon. Mill River employs a spread attack with Mark Goyette under center and Dan Blanchard toting the majority of the carries. Woodstock, in a Wing-T offense, is led by Oliver Kaija and Tom Baumann.
“That will be the tale of the game: Which defense can stop the other offense,” Mill River coach Art Peterson said. “Woodstock has a great reputation and you have to be very disciplined and play fundamentally sound to beat them.”
A New Stalcup shines at BBA
After nearly 100 touchdowns, 7,000 yards passing and Burr and Burton Academy’s first Gatorade player of the year award in football, coach Jason Thomas had plenty of reasons to retire the No. 11 jersey of former standout quarterback Jake Stalcup.
Then Griffin Stalcup came along.
Just a freshman, he has picked up where his big brother left off last year as the Bulldogs’ signal-caller.
The 6-foot, 155-pound rookie — a few inches shorter than his brother, who now plays at Middlebury — has proven to be an athletic dual threat with eight TDs in the air and three more on the ground for 3-1 BBA.
He already turned in his first 300-yard passing game against Spaulding in Week 2, his second varsity start.
And No. 11 seems to fit him just fine.
“If the kid continues to do what he’s done, maybe we retire it as a Stalcup family jersey,” Thomas said.
While his brother was a polished pocket-passer, Thomas said the younger Stalcup has already shown he can manage a game and, adept at passing and rushing the ball, keep defenses honest.
“He’s got a lot of football under his belt already,” Thomas said. “‘He’s an athlete and he’s already learned the system through his brother’s eyes. They talk about football with each other a lot.”
Stalcup only took the reins in preseason after projected starter Ryan Smith suffered a hand injury and was forced to move to wide receiver.
But Stalcup has matured steadily and last week led BBA to 36 unanswered points in a 43-13 win at Mount Anthony.
“He’s a quarterback, that’s what he is,” Thomas said. “He’s a competitor and ready to make his own mark.”
Teams raising cancer awareness
At its home game tonight, Colchester is raising money for cancer awareness, part of a ‘Pink Out’ sponsored by the Vermont National Guard, coach Tom Perry said.
Pink T-shirts will be available for purchase, funds that will go toward breast cancer research.
On Saturday, BFA-St. Albans will host its fifth annual Powder Puff football game.
Senior girls from BFA and Missisquoi will play in the fundraising game that helps families financially in their battle with cancer.
Over the past four years, the Powder Puff game event has raised more than $46,000, said BFA athletic director Dan Marlow.