Jamestown RB Jaylen Butera wins 2021 Connolly Cup

Sports

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — After taking a hiatus in the shortened 2020-21 spring season, the Connolly Cup returned for to hand out the 49th award to the top high school football player in Western New York.

After a dinner and reception at Ilio DiPaolo’s, the Connolly Cup was awarded to Jamestown senior running back Jaylen Butera for his outstanding performance on the field this fall.

Butera was the key to the Red Raiders both offensively and defensively this season. As an incredibly fast back that was almost impossible to bring down once he found a hole, Butera rushed for 2,337 yards and 36 touchdowns, and also caught 21 passes for 417 yards and eight more touchdowns.

Just as fast on defense as he was on offense, he picked off opposing quarterbacks six times, and racked up over 70 tackles on the season. Butera helped lead Jamestown to their first Section VI title since 2014. The Red Raiders went on to win the Far West Regional before falling to the eventual state champion Christian Brothers Academy 20-18 in the Class A state semifinals.

“It’s an honor. There’s been a lot of great players before me, just to be a part of it and to win the award, it’s just surreal,” Jamestown senior running back Jaylen Butera said. “It just shows how far I’ve come. Also, I’ve got to thank God because he’s given me my athletic talents. Shoutout to the other nine guys, they’re amazing too, and they should be proud of themselves for being here.”

“We’re really proud of Jaylen. He’s not only done it on the field, he’s done it off the field, and he’s been a leader and a role model for all of our young student athletes that look up to him, and he’s been an inspiration for our community,” Jamestown head coach Tom Langworthy said. “When you have the character that Jaylen does and you have the talent and the play that Jaylen does, it’s really the full package. He should be the person that brings our community together through sports, but it’s not just sports, it’s his character as well.”

Butera finishes his career at Jamestown as the all-time leader in season and career rushing yards. He rushed for a total of 4,274 yards and 62 touchdowns, as well as 728 yards receiving with another 13 touchdowns through the air.

CONNOLLY CUP RUNNERS UP:

Dominac Allen, Bennett running back

Carson Alberti, Depew running back

Tyler Baker, Canisius quarterback

Devin Collins, Hamburg running back

Micah Harry, Lancaster running back

Xander Hind, Randolph running back

Trey Kleitz, Iroquois quarterback

Christian Lewis, St. Mary’s running back

Xander Payne, Medina quarterback

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