Eagles To Host Knights Friday

Meetings between Stratford Eagles and Deerfield Windsor Knights football teams have traditionally carried state championship implications. Two years ago, Stratford defeated Deerfield in the final four, advancing to the championship. Last year, Deerfield defeated Stratford in the final four before going on to win a title of its own.

Friday’s matchup carries additional significance as the two teams meet for what might be the final time, as Stratford prepares to move to the GHSA next year.

Stratford Head Coach Mark Farriba believes that Deerfield’s biggest strength is their confidence.

“They are accustomed to winning,” he said. “They don’t expect to lose. They are well coached and very aggressive. From our standpoint we have to try to set the tone and not be reactive. We need to take initiative.”

Traditionally one of the GISA’s strongest programs in Class AAA, the Knights come into the game 2-1 after eking out a 14-13 victory against Mount de Sales Academy (0-2) last week. Stratford (2-0) overcame a listless first half against Pinewood Christian Academy to win its home opener 27-6 last Friday.

Farriba said that while the Eagles are off to a strong start, they are continuing to make incremental improvements and add new wrinkles to the offense.

“I wouldn’t call them adjustments, just fixing things that we’re not doing well. We are just continuing to add a few things in our overall offense and defense plans. We’re not doing everything that we can do yet, and we’re just trying to take it one step at a time, have a little something every week that we’re adding,” Farriba said.

Senior Morgan Sowell said he is looking forward to a rematch with the Knights.

“I’m most looking forward to the opportunity of getting to play them at home and to return the defeat that they gave us last year at Deerfield.”