A really good kicker can elevate a high school football team from good to great, and that’s what Mike Aresco does for the Middletown Blue Dragons.
Aresco, a senior, hit a 43-yarder with ease late in the third quarter of Friday night’s 51-20 win over Platt. It was his 22nd career field goal, which set the Connecticut high school record. All along, fans of the program knew this night would come and underscores their belief that he’s the best kicker Middletown’s ever had and that his right leg is just getting warmed up for the next level.
Only Windsor stands between Middletown and a 10-0 regular season. The Blue Dragons and Warriors square off the night before Thanksgiving, Nov. 22, in Windsor.
Can Middletown finally beat Windsor? Yes.
Windsor is undefeated as well. The Warriors have to beat Norwich Free Academy next weekend to create a 9-0 vs. 9-0 matchup.
Some believe at this point in time that the annual game determines whether Middletown has a good or a great season. The Blue Dragons haven’t beaten Windsor in Sal Morello’s time as coach.
But this could be the year you consider a fantastic kicking game and a very good defense supports the deep offense provided by Stone Belzo, Xzavier Reyes, DeAaron Lawrence, Tyreece Lumpkin and others.
Can Middletown win a state championship in Class L? Maybe.
It’s been a tough go in the playoffs for Middletown over the years. The Blue Dragons haven’t won a playoff game since 2013. The division in 2017 includes Windsor and undefeated teams Masuk and Fitch. One-loss teams New Canaan, Hand and Maloney are lurking.
This much is guaranteed: It will be fun watching how it all turns out.