Trumbull rallies in fourth quarter to stun Ludlowe

FAIRFIELD — After Trumbull’s opening week loss to Staples two weeks ago, head coach Marce Petroccio said he wanted to see his team show more fight moving forward.

Message received.

Trailing 28-14 in the fourth quarter, Trumbull completed a 14-point comeback on the road, shocking Ludlowe 29-28 Friday night.

Trumbull’s fourth quarter deficit was a credit to the Ludlowe defense, which recorded a pair of interceptions as well as a fumble recovery that was returned for a touchdown.

Trumbull’s takeaways could have been a result of not playing for two weeks after their Week 2 matchup with Westhill was cancelled due to COVID-19 protocols.

Trumbull would eventually begin its comeback effort halfway through the fourth quarter. After forcing Ludlowe to punt on the first drive of the fourth, the Eagles would march down the field and score thanks to quarterback Hunter Agosti, who scored from a yard out to make it 28-21.

With Ludlowe in possession and attempting to run out the clock, Trumbull’s defense would start turning the momentum to the Golden Eagles’ sideline.

On the following drive after Agosti’s score, Trumbull forced a turnover on downs right at midfield.

With 2:45 to play, Agosti would find Corbin Smith for a 21-yard catch-and-run into the end zone between two Ludlowe defenders, bringing Trumbull within an extra point of tying the game.

On the PAT attempt, however, the holder would mishandle the snap. Smith, who is also the team’s kicker, scooped the loose ball and pushed his way over the goal line for a two-point conversion, giving Trumbull a one-point lead.

“I couldn’t even tell you what happened. I just saw the bad snap, picked it up, and did my thing,” Smith said. “I just knew I had to score.”

Ludlowe would have chances to retake the lead in the final two minutes, but both drives ended with interceptions, sealing the comeback for Trumbull.

With several key players sidelined due to injury, Smith’s versatility as a receiver, kicker, and defensive back proved to be valuable in the late stages of the game.

“If you have someone that can play many positions and someone gets hurt, you can fill in for them and it works perfectly,” Smith said.

Even with the miscues and errors, Petroccio said a win like Friday’s can propel his team moving forward.

“We don’t always do things the way we’re supposed to, but to come back and win the game is just amazing,” Petroccio said. “I’m proud of my kids. The Eagles are 1-1 and I’ll take it.”

In all three of their games this season, Ludlowe has lost by a touchdown or less. In the defeat, Falcons’ head coach Mitchell Ross viewed this game as a win for his team mentally.

“All I can say is I’m proud of them,” Ross said. “It took a lot of guts to play that out. Our defense made tons of big plays today.”

PLAYER OF THE GAME

Corbin Smith, Trumbull Sr. WR: Scored three touchdowns, including the go-ahead touchdown and two-point conversion with 2:46 left in the fourth quarter

QUOTEABLE

“Hopefully now this will help us start getting over the hump. There were some missed assignments and mistakes we will have to fix, but I’ll take the win,” — Trumbull head coach Marce Petroccio

TRUMBULL 29, LUDLOWE 28

TRUMBULL 7 7 0 15 — 29

LUDLOWE 13 8 7 0 — 28

L—Denholm Feldman 9-yard run (William Depiano kick)

T—Corbin Smith 5-yard run (Corbin Smith kick)

L—Lucca Iannone 15-yard pass to Zack Hathaway (Kick failed)

T—Hunter Agosti 7-yard pass to Corbin Smith (Kick good)

L—Jack Campbell 29-yard pass to Lucca Iannone (Aaron Field run)

L—Manny Cacciari fumble return (Kick good)

T—Agosti 2-yard run (Kick good)

T—Agosti 21-yard pass to Smith (Smith run)