Shelton drops 38-28 decision to Prep

The Shelton High football team had three opportunities to score points go by the board in the first half, and Fairfield Prep went on to defeat the Gaels, 38-28, in a key SCC clash at Finn Stadium on Friday night.

“We needed to captialize early, we needed to get on top,” said Shelton coach Jeff Roy after his No. 7 Gaels dipped to 4-1 on the season and Prep improved to 4-1. “We easily could have had 21 points, and then it became a dogfight.”

Shelton’s first possession ended with a missed 30-yard field goal try. After a three-and-out, the Gaels drove from their 25 to the Jesuits’ 18 before giving the ball up on downs.

Prep’s Colton Smith scored on a quarterback keeper from 13 yards out on the first play of the second quarter.

Shelton then drove to the Prep 13 only to again be stopped on downs.

The Gaels finally broke through when Jason Thompson took a screen pass from Mark Piccirillo for a 44-yard score, and Joe Zoppi’s PAT gave Shelton a 7-6 lead with 2:35 left in the half.

Smith led Prep back, and his 15-yard scoring pass to John DelliSanti gave the visitors a 12-7 lead at the break.

John Buckley’s interception halted Shelton’s first drive in the third quarter, and Prep went 59 yards and scored on Smith’s 9-yard keeper.

Shelton made it an 18-13 game on Thompson’s 7-yard run with 3:38 left in the third.

Prep’s next possession carried into the final period, where DelliSanto found paydirt on a 15-yard run.

Andrew Cunha made a diving interception at the Jesuits’ 13 to stop one Shelton drive, but the Gaels closed within 24-21 with 3:58 remaining on Piccirillo’s 13-yard pass to Mike Pingree and a two-point conversion pass to Kyle Drost.

Smith took the wind out of the Gaels’ sail when he got to the edge and raced 80 yards untouched for a score.

Sean Morrison hit the PAT.

Shelton made it 31-28 with 1:53 remaining on Drost’s tackle-breaking 34-yard touchdown reception.

Again, Smith answered, this time with a 49-yard scamper. Morrison tacked on the final point.

“Colton demonstrated tonight why I believe he is one of the best quarterbacks around,” Prep coach Tom Shea said. “He can beat you with his arm or his feet.”