Football: Foran Lions lose to unbeaten Bulldogs

Bunnell High  jumped out to a 18-0 lead in the first quarter, and despite improving their play in the second half Foran High fell to the unbeaten Bulldogs 31-7 at the Vito DeVito Sports Complex on Friday.

Junior signal caller Andrew Janik combined for over 150 yards from scrimmage, throwing for 104 and a touchdown and rushing for 56 yards. His backfield mate, Tom Dempsey combined with Janik for over 100 yards rushing.

Four Bulldogs scored touchdowns as Brian Carrafiello threw for over 180 yards and two touchdowns.

After Bunnell and Foran traded three-and-outs, the Bulldogs got the ball on their own 32-yard line and moved the ball to the end zone in eight plays. A 10-yard pass to Eli Alexandre set up the 35-yard touchdown to Jovan Eggleston to give Bunnell a 6-0 lead. The Bunnell extra point was no good.

The Lions responded with their first, first down of the game on a Janik keeper but turned the ball over to Bunnell at their own 41. The Bulldogs prompted scored on the next drive. Carrafiello’s 33-yard pass to Josh Lisi on fourth down led to a 12-yard touchdown strike to Alexandre to make it a 12-0 game. The two-point conversion attempt was no good.

After a Foran three-and-out, Bunnell blocked Janik’s punt attempt and took over at the Foran 33. A 17-yard Tyreek Smith run and a eight-yard pass to Smith from Carrafiello gave Bunnell an 18-0 lead after the first quarter. The Bulldogs attempted an extra point but it was no good.

“We knew that we couldn’t get off to a slow start because they would jump out on us and we haven’t proven that we can dig ourselves out of a hole,” said Foran coach Tom Drew. “I think we came out in the second half and we played the brand of football that we want to play. It was a tale of two halves it really was.”

In the second quarter, the two teams traded three-and-outs before one of them turned ugly. After Foran went three-and-out, the Lions attempted to punt. The long snap was short of Janik, and Smith picked up the loose ball and ran it in for a 25 yard touchdown that gave Bunnell a 25-0 lead with four minutes until the half.

The Lions quickly responded. Janik found Rich Piscitelli down the sideline for a 39-yard gain. Janik then connected with captain Maxwell Tavitian for seven yards. Two plays later, Janik found Tavitian again, open on a hook route, for a 13-yard score to make it 25-7 at the half.

“It was a huge momentum gain for us,” Drew said. “It brought us into the second half and gave us a little life. We didn’t feel like we were down 25-7 at halftime. They didn’t believe they were out of it.”

At the start of the second half, Foran put together its best drive but came up with nothing to show for it. They started at their own 20-yard line and moved the ball 66 yards in 10 plays, ultimately turning the ball over on downs at the Bunnell 14. After the Lions defense forced a three-and-out, Chris N’Dabian’s interception got the ball back for the Bulldogs.

On the following drive, the Bulldogs fumbled the ball on the drive’s third play but the Lions were unable to capitalize as they moved the ball 33 yards before fumbling the ball back to Bunnell.

The Bulldogs made the Foran mistake count, moving 67 yards on 9 plays, capping it off with a four yard score from N’Dabian to seal the Bunnell victory, 31-7.

“We are building and were trying to build it the right way,” Drew said. “This one will sting but tomorrow we’ll wake up and we’ll be 0-0, looking to go 1-0.”