Football: Lawmen looking to take the next step
“Our first goal was to win the division, we’ve done that. Goal two is to dance with the prettiest girls at the party, and that’s what we’re out to do,” Jonathan Law head football coach Derrick Lewis said about his team’s aspirations this fall.
After tying for the Southern Connecticut Conference Division II West title in 2014, Lewis is counting on a year of experience between the coaching staff and players to carry the Devonites into the state playoffs.
Lewis guided Law to a 5-6 record in his first season (sixth overall coaching) with the Lawmen.
“I’ve been blessed with a great coaching staff,” he said. “Mark Manes is our offensive coordinator, Steve Neugebauer runs the defense with Dexter Alexander our linebacker coach.
“Desmond Lymon is in charge of the offense and defensive lines. Teddy Boynton is our special teams coach and my top advisor.
“Jeff Paulin is the jayvee coach and Rob Lynch is in his second year as head coach of the freshman team.
“I went with what I learned from Randy Edsall while at UConn — when you want to have a program you have to have stake holders on your staff. People you can depend on.”
Joe Coury, R.J. Lynch, Tim Caldwell, Brian Chiaraluce, David Patrick and Logan Danville will captain the team.
“We went with what I saw work in college (at Southern Connecticut. and UConn when it comes to captains,” Lewis said.
“These players aren’t chosen because they put in the time or because they are seniors. They are captains because they take the game seriously. Every player has a quirk and this way each fills a need on the field.”
Law will look to run the football behind an offensive line of Brendan Ahearn, Chiaraluce, Vinnie Sementelli, Coury and Storm Furtado, with Dave Tortora and Andy Paulus rotating in.
“We have size and attitude kids on the o-line,” said Lewis. “They are tough on each other in a good way. They love being linemen.
“We’ll have a running back by committee, led by Jake Mola and Danville.
“We’ll run out of the T (formation) with some spread offense thrown in. Mitchell Smith is our quarterback. He makes good reads, moves well in the pocket and has grown into the position fast in the preseason.
“Dean Pettway is quick and will be a slot receiver. Tyler Cavaliere and Justin McFadden will also catch the ball for us.
“Tucker Saley is a monster at tight end. He is 6-foot-3, 230 pounds moves great and has soft hands to catch the ball.”
Law will count on size and a year together to help them defend sideline to sideline.
“Saley, who had eight sacks, and Coury (5-11, 210 pounds) will be at ends.
“Tim Caldwell, R.J. Lynch and Logan Danville will be at linebacker.
“David Patrick will be our quarterback on defense from his safety position. Cavaliere and McFadden will also be in the secondary.
“Roland Foerster will be our kicker, play wide receiver and defensive back.”
Law rosters 45 jayvee-varsity players, including 23 sophomores, with 27 freshmen currently at practice.
“We don’t just have twenty-three sophomores,” Lewis said. “Those guys are spelling guys, pushing guys, on offense and defense. That helps with our progress
“We overachieved last year, but we underachieved early and that slowed us from becoming who we are now. Last year we weren’t ready.
“We wanted to get from the idea of making the playoffs to punching numbers after playing on Thanksgiving to see if we did.”
Law will play at North Haven, four-time SCC Division II East defending champions, in its season opener on Friday at 7 p.m.
When asked how the Lawmen planned on holding off the run-heavy Indians, Lewis said, “They are who they are and we are who we are. It should be like the Game of Thrones. They don’t do anything cute; they come at you.
“I have lots of respect for Tony Sags (head coach Tony Sagnella). It will be an old school fight.
“Our job is to keep in striking distance with a fighting chance in the final twelve minutes.”