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WEST HARTFORD – — Cam Righi stepped into the starting role as the Wethersfield quarterback in the last game of the season last year when the starter was injured.

Righi was only a freshman but he was already a high-level athlete. Over the summer, following his freshman year, he committed to play baseball at UConn.

“He’s a catcher, which helps him at quarterback because catchers control the game for baseball,” Wethersfield football coach Matt McKinnon said. “He’s a big-time power hitter for baseball.

“Football is his break from baseball in the fall.”

Righi, a 6-foot-4, 220-pounder who started playing football in middle school, has helped the Wethersfield football team to a 5-1 start, after a 35-21 win over Hall in a CCC interdivisional game Friday night.

Righi had 26 carries for 153 yards and three touchdowns. Wethersfield’s attack was double-edged: junior running back Jova’n Hill had 21 carries for 187 yards and two touchdowns.

“I feel like we did a great job,” Hill said. “I told Righi before this game even started, it was going to be me and him. And our defense had some great turnovers.”

Righi rushed eight yards for the Eagles’ first touchdown with 2:47 left in the first quarter, and then a fumble recovery by Wethersfield led to his second touchdown, a 4-yard run, with four seconds left in the quarter.

The score was tied at 14 at halftime.

After Wethersfield’s defense sacked Hall quarterback Bode Smith, forcing a fumble which was recovered by Felipe Lozano, Hill scored on an 8-yard run and then again at the start of the fourth quarter on a 55-yard run. Righi had the Eagles’ last touchdown on a 7-yard run with 6:46 left in the game.

“The offensive line, they created the biggest holes for us,” Righi said. “Me and Jova’n were talking about it, we would go behind our wideback Evan Christian and there was just no one there. They were blocking everyone.”

McKinnon, a middle school teacher in Wethersfield, had Righi in class in eighth grade.

“I knew he loved sports and baseball was his No. 1 and he had just started playing football,” McKinnon said. “When he came up [to high school]he fell in love with it more. We always preach being multi-sport athletes, too, so it’s good to see these guys excel in more than one sport.”

Hill, who was the team’s leading rusher last season, is happy to have someone else for the opponents’ defense to key on.

“He’s amazing. Amazing,” Hill said of Righi. “When I know teams are focusing on me, I know we still got another main factor on my offense, so I don’t got to worry about too much. I feel like there’s like two of me back there.”

Righi gave it right back to his teammate.

“He diverts everyone’s attention,” Righi said of Hill. “Everyone’s keying on him and I can just go off with the ball when everyone’s trying to tackle him.”

When Righi began to play last year, he was a receiver.

“When he took the ball against Newington to end our season, we knew he was our guy,” McKinnon said. “He was that great. He came in this year, one of the hardest workers in the weight room, straight As in the classroom, wants to do well and the kid loves football.

“He’s a triple threat back there. He can run, he can throw it and then we can put him out there to go catch it. He had a touchdown earlier this year. Nice big target and he’s tough.”

Lori Riley can be reached at lriley@courant.com.

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