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NEW BRITAIN The quest for No. 1 is done.

Capital Prep/Achievement First won its first state football championship Saturday, defeating North Branford 20 13 in the Class S Small title game before 2,400 at Arute Field.

Coach Chris Fulton and his players hugged and celebrated after receiving their championship plaque the first for a Hartford school since Weaver won Class M in 1999.

NEW BRITAIN Windsor coach Rob Fleeting held the Class L Small championship plaque aloft. He thanked his players, assistant coaches, cheerleaders, parents, fans and past players.

Anyone ever associated with Windsor celebrated this victory Saturday at Arute Field.

The Warriors’ 38 16 victory against.

(TOM YANTZ)

The Thunderbirds (11 2) increased their advantage to 13 6 on Paul Pastet’s sneak from the 1 in the second quarter.

Jakai Gill blocked a punt for Capital Prep, and Lamar Butler picked it up and dashed 18 yards down the left sideline for a TD with 2:14 left in the half. Phillips’ conversion pass to Jakob Vera gave the Trailblazers a 14 13 halftime lead.

“Everybody was up on our D,
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” said Murray, a junior end. “We were confident we could shut them down. On our team, we play both ways with our roster [40 guys]. But we weren’t going to wear out.”

Said North Branford coach Mark Basil: “They brought a lot of pressure. They made it difficult.”

It looked like Capital Prep would increase its advantage late in the fourth quarter. It had a first and goal at the North Branford 3. But the Thunderbirds stuffed Phillips short of the goal line on four consecutive sneaks, the last with 3:20 remaining.

North Branford wasn’t finished. Pastet ran for 13 yards on a fourth and 9 from his 2 for a first down.

The Thunderbirds continued to drive. They had a first and 10 at the Capital Prep 27 with less than two minutes left before a holding penalty set them back.

On fourth and 33 at midfield, Pastet completed a pass to Shelby Franklin. A personal foul was called on the Trailblazers with 1:07 to go, and North Branford had a fourth and 2 at the 19. Because it was not a dead ball foul, North Branford had one more play to try to get a first down.

But Pastet’s next pass fell incomplete, and Capital Prep was two kneel downs from notching the first championship for the Constitution State Conference.
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