Pass­ing game clicks for Fair­field Prep

New Haven Register (New Haven, CT) - - GAMETIMECT - By Dan Nowak

CHESHIRE — The Fair­field Prep foot­ball team has had its suc­cess this sea­son both on the ground and through the air.

On Fri­day night against SCC ri­val Cheshire, the pass­ing game worked to per­fec­tion.

John Iaropoli com­pleted 19 of 24 passes for 272 yards and four touch­downs, and re­ceiver Finn Du­ran had six re­cep­tions for 137 yards and three touch­downs to lead Fair­field Prep to a 28-14 win over Cheshire at Maclary Ath­letic Com­plex.

The Je­suits over­came two elec­tri­fy­ing plays by Cheshire run­ning back Jake McAlin­den, who kept the Rams in the game with a 95-yard kick­off re­turn for a touch­down and a 93-yard touch­down run.

“This was the best game for us this sea­son so far when it comes to our pass­ing game,” Fair­field Prep coach Keith Hell­stern said. “The pass­ing game was click­ing and it was a good thing be­cause we al­ways ex­pect a tough game from a Tier one ri­val. Their No. 43 (McAlin­den) is an ex­cep­tional player. We missed some tack­les and he kept them in the game.”

Iaropoli cred­ited his re­ceivers for his suc­cess.

“Du­ran is a beast out there, he catches ev­ery­thing,” Iaropoli said. “We usu­ally only call about 20 pass­ing plays a game. But tonight the pass­ing game was click­ing and we threw more passes than usual. This was an im­por­tant game for us to win, ev­ery­body con­trib­uted.”

In the first half, the Je­suits (4-1) dom­i­nated. Iaropoli com­peted 12 of 15 passes for 193 yards and three touch­downs. The Je­suits had a 21-0 lead un­til McAlin­den elec­tri­fied the Rams crowd with a 95-yard kick­off re­turn for a 21-7 score at half­time.

On Prep’s sec­ond pos­ses­sion of the first quar­ter, Iaropoli sent a per­fect lead pass to Du­ran 25 yards down­field and he never broke stride on his way to a 61-yard touch­down and 7-0 lead.

Iaropoli sent the Je­suits fans to their feet again early in the sec­ond quar­ter with a 50-yard pass to Sam Roberto for a 14-0 lead with 11:48 to go in the half.

The Je­suits would go on to pad their lead with their last pos­ses­sion of the half. Iaropoli con­nected with Du­ran again for a 9-yard touch­down pass with 30 sec­onds to go.

En­ter McAlin­den and his big run to give the Rams fans some hope for the sec­ond half. On the kick­off, he caught the ball at the Cheshire 5-yard-line and bolted down the right side­line, break­ing two tack­les along the way. With 30 yards to go, he broke to the left side of the field and scam­pered in for the 95yard TD run to trim the Prep lead to 14 points.

In the third quar­ter, on the Rams’ sec­ond pos­ses­sion, McAlin­den elec­tri­fied the crowd again. He took a hand­off from quar­ter­back Colby Grif­fin and bolted down the left side­line for a 93 yard touch­down run to cut the lead to 21-14.. But that would as close as the Rams would get.

Iaropoli and Du­ran hooked up one more time for a 43-yard touch­down pass with 6:19 left to put the game away.

“McAlin­den works hard, he worked hard all week,” Cheshire coach Don Drust said. “Those were two big plays he gave us. But you just have to put these games be­hind you. Our kids will show up to­mor­row and we’ll work hard again to pre­pare for our next game.”

The Rams fell to 0-5.

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