2011 Year in Review. August 25. Lytton continues to soar. Story by Rick Wilson
Lytton continues to soar
Okay Brenden, what do you do for an encore now?
Rush for 500 yards in a game? Maybe score 10 TDs to break your record of nine set against Wilby last season? Maybe you’ll throw for three or four touchdowns seeing as how you unveiled your arm with a TD pass in Saturday’s 66-28 thumping of Wolcott.
I mean, how high is high? Every time we think the bar is set at an unreachable height, there you go again.
Torrington’s All-State running back would tell you there is no bar. There is no goal to rush for 428 yards now that he has hit 427 registered against Wolcott. Ten touchdowns? Not in his line of thinking. Not that he didn’t appreciate the seven scores against the Eagles. Nice numbers to mull over in future years, but not a goal to strive for.
As Torrington coach Dan Dunaj said, “He’s more about productivity than the stats. When we need it, he gets it.”
Even when asked at the beginning of the season if there was any pressure to duplicate the phenomenal numbers he put up during his junior year which included the Wilby gem and more than 2,500 yards rushing and state-wide recognition, Lytton said there was no goal, winning games and a spot in the state playoffs were what mattered.
In Lytton’s world it is not about Brenden Lytton and that is no false façade. He does what Dunaj and staff want him to do. If that is lugging the ball 40 times he’ll do it. If it doesn’t work out which hardly happens, he’ll make adjustments to make it work out.
Lytton had a credible night in the opener against the class of the NVL, Ansonia – 127 yards. Still, Lytton has spoiled the multitudes. With the Chargers brilliant running back Montrel Dobbs graduated, he is the spotlight guy this season. The numbers weren’t Lytton numbers.
After so many 200 and 300-yard games a year ago, 127 yards seemed almost paltry. Then on the other side of the ball there was a precocious sophomore named Arkeel Newsome who stole the night with 324 yards rushing.
It wasn’t Lytton against Newsome but the comparison was made. Unfairly in the sense that Torrington is not Ansonia as the game revealed, nor is the Raiders’ attack balanced enough to take some of the heat off Lytton against a team like Ansonia which just threw nine guys into the box and swarmed like desert rats around an oasis.
Newsome even admitted he was juiced up knowing that Lytton was on the other side of the ball. It was all enough to either irritate or inspire. It did neither.
After the Ansonia game, Lytton talked about how his team had to improve and how good Ansonia was. After shredding Wolcott, Lytton was asked if the game against Ansonia was incentive for him.
“No, I just put it behind me,” he said.
Move on and move up, look ahead and leave the past behind. It is all part of Lytton’s success. It is us who revel more in the numbers and why not? There was a time when a 1,000-yard rusher at Torrington was worthy of banquet. Not that they haven’t have had any great runners like Davie Holiday in the mid to late 1980s. But runners of that caliber have been of the rare coin.
If Lytton doesn’t get lost in the numbers, let us. The totals Lytton has put up for a season and two games are mind-boggling. Put the abacus away and get the calculator. His performance against Wolcott is half of a career for most. They are Montrel Dobbs numbers. They are Alex Thomas numbers. They are Brenden Lytton numbers.
He is now over 3,000 yards for his career and the 2,502 yards racked up a year ago (CT. Sportswriters record book) is the seventh best single season total in Connecticut history. And lately he has become even scarier running out of the Wildcat formation.
Lytton is a potent headache for the opposition out of a regular formation. When the ball is hiked directly to him, he looks flat out lethal. It provides that second of time to assess the situation. He picked his spots against the young Wolcott defense, eyeing up the holes with precision.
It also brings the defense to him which could open things up for the Raiders as with yesterday’s TD pass to Phil Bresson in which nobody was within a plane flight of the receiver.
If Lytton was a surprise last season, he is a marked man this time around. Everybody knows who No. 24 is and everybody knows he will get the ball 25 times a game and more. The yards will become tougher as Ansonia indicated.
So what does Lytton do for an encore? Maybe nothing. Just being Brenden Lytton should be enough. In his world, winning games is the encore, not TDs and yardage. He doesn’t worry about that stuff. Of course the opposition might.