Brenden Lytton runs wild for Raider football
TORRINGTON- It’s considered a great season in football if a running back gets to the 1,000-yard mark in an entire 10-game season.
So consider the fact that Torrington senior running back, Brenden Lytton, has eclipsed the mark in half the time, you can see that something special is unfolding in front of us.
Fresh off back-to-back 200-plus yard efforts in his team's last two games, both key Copper Division wins, Lytton is primed to leap into a entirely different hemisphere with five games to go.
Two-thousand yards? Not out of the question for a player who was supposed to be the Raiders' second option this season before Zack Schebell went down with a pre-season injury.
Just days before Torrington was to open up against East Lyme, on the road, Lytton found out he was going to have to carry the load for his team.
East Lyme was an out-of-conference game Torrington had put on the schedule to test what kind of team it was going to have right out of the chute.
All the senior back did was rush for 218 yards against a team that knew what was coming.
The Lytton show begins with tremendous blocking on the offensive line and he is the first one to give credit where it is due.
“Those guys do a great job making running for me,” Lytton said after stunning the Vikings in week one, “I just follow them.”
That’s part of the story but the other reason his success this season is a natural ability, according to a man who has followed and helped coach Raiders football the past seven years.
Paul Denza, who’s son Steve was a standout for the Raiders on both sides of the ball, has seen something special from Lytton since he first saw him during his freshman season.
“Brenden is one of those special athletes who has great natural ability,” Denza said, “He has the ability to set up blocks by ducking inside before making his way to the outside.”
In the East Lyme game, Lytton missed the entire third quarter after taking a hard to the head but still broke the 200-yard mark.
His 16-yard, pure effort run around the left side gave his team the winning score with under a minute to play.
That sweep around the left side has become a signature in the Raiders offensive playbook and even though teams know it’s coming, it’s an entirely different story in stopping it.
Friday night's 22-8 win over Kennedy is a perfect example of what we are talking about.
After a lackluster first half that saw the Raiders up just one at 9-8, the ball belonged to Lytton.
After a 92-yard effort in the first half, Lytton carried the ball a remarkable 20 times in the second half. His team ran 24 plays.
The Eagles knew what was coming but could do nothing to stop both the Raiders offensive line or Lytton.
His 21-yard touchdown run with five minutes left sealed the deal for Torrington and gave the Red Raiders their first three-game winning streak in many a season.
His work is not just limited to taking the rock when called on.
Lytton handles the extra points, punts and even tried his leg at kicking off in his last game.
Next up for Lytton and company will be another key Copper Division match-up against Woodland.
The Hawks have a 3-2 overall record but have not lost in Copper action (2-0). Torrington sports a 4-1 overall record but lost to Copper foe Naugatuck in their second game of the season.
With the crowds at Torrington getting bigger and bigger each game, adding a potential record-setting runner's effort to the mix could make it an even noisier place come Saturday night at 7:00 p.m.