Monday, December 06, 2010

Hunt eager to be a Bulldog

Hours before he would step onto the field and help his St. Joseph squad past previously-undefeated Valley Regional/Old Lyme in Saturday's Class S semifinals, L.J. Hunt had some other business to take care of.

Needing to bump up his SAT score by 20 points to fit into one of the recruiting bands, the Yale commit was taking the standardized test so he could be a part of the Bulldogs' incoming freshman class.

"This summer I went to a recruiting camp and they gave me spot on the team," Hunt said after rushing for 90 yards in a 44-7 semifinal victory at Municipal Stadium in Waterbury. "They said I have to get my SATs up a little bit. I took the SATs (Saturday) and hopefully I got the scores I needed.

"That has always been the school I have wanted to go to, it is a blessing. I am really proud of myself. It's a lot of hard work but I got where I want to be. It is real tough. (The day of the) homecoming game we all had to take SATs. It was tough
and this game it was as well but as a team we came through and pulled out a victory."

Hunt, who has run for 872 yards and is averaging nearly seven yards per carry as a senior, is projected to be a cornerback at Yale. Hunt is a key contributor on a rock-solid defense for the Cadets with more than 50 tackles including a season-high nine against fellow state finalist New Canaan.

"I am all over the place here," Hunt said. "I play a little D-end, a little bit of (line)backer, safety, corner, running back so I am all over the field."

Hunt has taken a bigger role on offensive since star running back Tyler Matakevich missed six games with a foot injury.

"He's really turned it on this year as a runner," St. Joseph coach Joe Della Vecchia said. "Last year we didn't use him that much on offense but when Tyler got hurt, he stepped in and has gotten better every week."

Hunt, Matakevich, quarterback Joe Della Vecchia (yes, he's the coach's son), receiver Pat Mulligan and leading tackler Sean Chinova are part of a talented senior class for the Cadets which is going for its second consecutive state title when they play Ansonia in the Class S final Saturday at 7 p.m. at Rentschler Field.

"It is a great senior class," Hunt said. "We have been playing together since we were little kids, since Pop Warner football, I know we won the states when we were younger. We are still together, playing ball together and it is a great feeling having all your brothers together."

After Saturday's game, he will turn his attention to his future - which he hopes includes a spot on the Yale football team.

"They are on an upward spiral," Hunt said. "They did pretty well this year so I am very excited to go and try to help them out and beat Harvard next year."

Hunt talks about the recruiting process as well as the fellow St. Joseph seniors eager to end their high school careers in style. Also, here is a video of some of Hunt's 90 rushing yards against Valley Regional/Old Lyme.

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