Pictured: Dalton Modehn, third from left, was recognized at halftime of H-K’s home game Friday. He is flanked by his parents (left) and coach Mike Baklik (far right). Jarrod Ramsey, the former Cougar who held the school’s rushing record previously, is to Modehn’s left.
By Marc Silvestrini
HIGGANUM — Haddam-Killingworth has been playing football since former head coach Dennis O’Rourke started the program in 1977, 43 seasons ago.
In all that time, no H-K player has rushed for more yards than Dalton Modehn, who was honored as the school’s all-time leading rusher during a ceremony at halftime of the Cougars’ Pequot Conference game against Granby/Canton on Friday.
According to statistics gathered and compiled by the only two head coaches in the school’s history –O’Rourke and current coach Mike Baklik — Modehn has rushed for 2,283 yards in slightly more than three years of play.
His total surpasses the former record total of Jarrod Ramsey, who rushed for 2,001 yards in a career that ended after the 2007 season.
Modehn, a 5-foot-11, 165-pound senior, gained more than 700 yards as a sophomore and more than 1,300 last year as a junior. He broke the record in H-K’s second game of the season on a 64-yard gallop against North Branford.
Unfortunately, Modehn, who finished the North Branford game with 127 yards on only 10 carries, broke his collarbone when tackled at the end of the long scamper and has missed H-K’s last three games.
Baklik said he is hoping that Modehn can return and possibly add to his record total in H-K’s final three games of the season.
“We miss him, we’d love to have him back,” Baklik said. “He’s an extremely hard and dedicated worker, whether it’s in the weight room, at practice or during an actual game. He just never slacks off.”
While Modehn and Ramsey stand atop the Cougar rushing yardage list, research by Baklik and O’Rourke indicates that Toby Callender, who graduated last spring and was Modehn’s running mate last year on a team that advanced all the way to the Class S title game, stands third on the list with 1,996 yards.
Led by Modehn and Callender, who also amassed about 1,300 yards rushing last year, the 2018 Cougars rushed for more than 4,000 yards.
Dan German, who last played in 2011, is fourth on the list with 1,807 yards rushing. Sal Zichichi, who last played in 2007, is fifth with 1,784 yards and Nate Cruz is sixth with 1,735.