Macari scores thrice in blowout of Ludlowe
Perhaps the only mystery for New Canaan High School football coach Lou Marinelli Friday night was whether his players would be flat in their home opener against a Fairfield Ludlowe team that had been outscored in its first two games, 95-6.
It did not take long for Marinelli to get the answer he desired.
The Rams took a 14-0 lead before running a play, and on the first one Kevin Macari scored his third touchdown as New Canaan jumped out to a 28-0 advantage after the first quarter and easily rolled to a 35-0 win to improve to 3-0.
It was a stark contrast from six days earlier, when New Canaan trailed Trinity Catholic late in the first half, 8-7, before erupting for 41 unanswered points.
"We came out more apprehensive last weekend and it showed," Marinelli said. "We wanted to make a statement we were ready to go and play in the beginning."
Macari certainly was, producing touchdowns on offense, defense and special teams in just over six minutes.
The Falcons' third play resulted in quarterback John Collavito throwing a pass over the middle right to Macari, who returned it 27 yards for a score just 1:41 in.
After Ludlowe was stopped without a first down on its next possession, Macari fielded a punt on the right side and had an open field, racing 40 yards for a 14-0 lead.
When New Canaan's offense finally took the field, Macari got behind the secondary and quarterback Matt Milano hit him in stride for a 53-yard touchdown.
"We've been kind of criticized and yelled at by the coaching staff for coming out slow, so we wanted to come out fast," Macari said. "We saw in their game against Central last week on a couple of plays Ludlowe did well and started to move the ball. We didn't want that. We wanted to step on their throats."
That was an apt description as the half continued to spiral downhill for the Falcons, who had minus-27 yards, were sacked four times by a tenacious New Canaan defense and lost two fumbles on bad snaps before the break.
While Ludlowe made personnel changes to try to solve their problems, Marinelli pulled his starters midway through the second quarter and was constrained in what he could allow his reserves to do because of the CIAC's controversial 50-point rule.
Before ceding the stage, New Canaan's first team tacked on a pair of scores, the first a 1-yard run by Joe Costigan and the second a well-executed 14-yard screen pass from Milano to running back Conor Goodwin, who missed last week's game with an injury.
Macari, an All-State receiver who is getting looks from a number of schools, was praised by his coach afterward.
"He happened to be in the right place at the right time," Marinelli said. "I can't remember a kid doing so much in such a short period of time."
The negative part was Macari spent a short time on the field.
"I'm not frustrated at all," he said. "We did what we had to do to get it done. If it comes in one quarter, it comes in one quarter. It can come in the second half like last week."
New Canaan, which plays Fairfield Warde next, has now beaten teams with a combined record of 0-8.
"The thing is we haven't really been tested yet, so we don't really know how good we are," Marinelli said.