WEST HARTFORD--Each week FOX 61 puts the spotlight on an individual worthy of being a “Fox Phenom.” This week we changed it up a bit to honor a whole team!
Just five years ago Coach Jason Martinez took over the Kingswood Oxford football program. The team from the West Hartford prep school could barely field a team, finishing the season 0-8.
Fast forward to 2015. This past weekend, the Kingswood Oxford Wyverns played in the Mike Atkins Bowl for the chance to win the New England prep school championship.
Kingswood scored early and often en-route to a 49-29 victory against the tough Berkshire School team from Sheffield, Massachusetts.
The Wyverns were led by captains Isiah Wright and Koby Quansah. Wright, who has verbally committed to Rutgers, had four catches for 123 yards. He scored a touchdown and rushed for a score. Quansah, who is headed to Duke, ran the ball 16 times for 156 yards and two touchdowns, including a thrilling 57-yard sprint that had the packed crowd at Hoffman Field on their feet.
Coach Martinez spoke about the journey he has been on since he took the top job as coach of the Wyverns.
“I saw the program for what it could be, not for what it was,” he said. “I knew with some hard work and some dedication and some kids that were committed and, with support of the parents, this program could be successful.”
Martinez’s right hand man, associate head coach Matt Kocay, has been with the Kingswood Oxford football team for 16 seasons and had never before won the ring he so coveted. Prior to the bowl game, Kocay spoke about the overall turnaround he has seen in the football program.
“For these kids, for the coaches that I coach with, for the parents -- everyone that’s been a part of this -- we have become a big family.” Kocay added, “You can earn success, it won’t be given to you and these kids earned it.”
Also prominent in the Kingswood Oxford offense against Berkshire was senior quarterback Jacob Hallenbeck, who passed for 230 yards and 2 touchdowns. Wide receiver Andrew Lemkuil scored on a 27-yard touchdown reception, and senior wideout Jared Bolden added a 25-yard tally.