Holy cross

Ligi and Kacprzyski help Holy Cross hold off Torrington

TORRINGTON — A year without football thanks to Covid-19 showed a baseline result for both teams in a 34-18 season-opening win for Holy Cross at Torrington High School on Friday night.

Offenses, relying on absolute skill and educated guesses for new players, can click right away; defenses, relying heavily on experience and teamwork, take longer.

The Crusaders and Raiders have launched new quarterbacks – junior David Kacprzyski for Holy Cross, senior Tyler Semonich for Torrington.

Both performed well behind inexperienced offensive lines and a few experienced running backs on both sides.

Kacprzyski threw two long touchdown passes and added 67 yards in a row. Semonich ran for a touchdown and added 52 passing yards. Neither threw an interception.

Crusaders coach Giampetruzzi’s big guess was to start freshman Anthony Shivas at center in an attack in which many plays went straight through the middle.

Still, experience showed behind the new quarterbacks. Holy Cross junior Tom Ligi ran for two touchdowns and 89 yards.

Seniors Sean Clinkscales and Exodus Rosado, the only two experienced players on Torrington’s roster, each ran for a touchdown. Clinskscales racked up a workhorse 109 yards on 16 carries in three quarters. Rosado ran for 62, not including a 35-yard kickoff return in the second quarter and another for 32 yards in the third.

Another Torrington senior, Tyler Zepperi, broke a Crusader kickoff in the fourth quarter for 62 yards, only to have the effort foiled by a fumble in Torrington’s final series for the game’s only turnover .

“They move the ball well,” said Holy Cross coach Giampetruzzi. “We knew they were tough.”

“I think we did well, but there are some things we need to clean up,” the Torrington Semonich quarterback said.

“We have to strengthen our defense,” said an assistant coach from Torrington in a phrase that any team coach could have come up with.

Offenses had a field day in the first half.

Torrington won the toss and handed the ball to Clinkscales for 34 yards on the first play from scrimmage. Semonich added 20 on another big play in the series, leaving Clinkscales to pick up the final three yards for the game’s first score.

But Torrington couldn’t find a kicker among its new players, and Holy Cross snuffed out the Raiders’ three attempts to run for two after their touchdowns.

When the Crusaders came right back for their first score in a series featuring a 38-yard run by Ligi, senior Kevin Matiz stepped up for the first of four extra kicks.

Midway through the second quarter, Matiz’s foot seemed to be the difference in the game as each team took their turn at another touchdown, 14-12.

But Torrington missed his next round and neither did Holy Cross. Another touchdown from Ligi and a kick from Matiz made it 21-12 at halftime.

The Raiders went scoreless in the third quarter as Kacprzyski upped the ante for the Crusaders with a 25-yard pass to Mahkai Wilson. The final point exchange of the fourth quarter – Rosado’s 8 yards for Torrington and Kapprzyski’s 18 for the Crusaders – left Holy Cross with the winning hand.

Give both defenses a bit more time.


At Torrington High School

Holy Cross7 14 6 7 – 34

Torrington6 6 0 6 – 18

T – Sean Clinkscales’ 3 meter run (failed run)

HC – Tom Ligi 6-yard run (Kevin Matiz kick)

T – Tyler Semonich’s 3-yard run (missed run

HC – 33-yard Matiz pass from David Kacprzyski (Matiz kick)

HC – Ligi 5-yard run (Matiz kick)

HC – Mahkai Wilson 25-yard pass from Kacprzyski (missed)

T – Exodus Rosado 8-yard run (missed run)

HC – Kacprzyski 18-yard run (Matiz kick)

Records: Sainte-Croix 1-0. Torrington 0-1.