Football: Trojans fall to defending state champs, 50-6

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  • With a minute and a half left in the fourth quarter, Troy’s Hunter Leighty, drags Flint Creek’s Cooper Bradshaw to the end zone as he scores for the Trojans Friday, August 31. (Ben Kibbey/The Western News)

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    Jonny Cielak is the winner of the 2018 Club Championship at Cabinet View Golf Club. Cielak returned this year as defending champion to play five matches for the title, defeating Tony Rebo in the final match.

  • With a minute and a half left in the fourth quarter, Troy’s Hunter Leighty, drags Flint Creek’s Cooper Bradshaw to the end zone as he scores for the Trojans Friday, August 31. (Ben Kibbey/The Western News)

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    Jonny Cielak is the winner of the 2018 Club Championship at Cabinet View Golf Club. Cielak returned this year as defending champion to play five matches for the title, defeating Tony Rebo in the final match.

The Troy High School football team took a 50-6 loss last Friday, at their home opener, facing the defending state champions, the Flint Creek Titans.

Flint Creek is the toughest team the Trojans will face all year, said Troy Head Coach Luke Haggerty. “I was really proud of our guys’ effort the whole time.”

“We played a good, quality football game,” he said. “We kept fighting until the end.”

Halfway into the first quarter, the Trojans were down 24 points to the Titans, but by the end of the half, they were holding Flint Creek at 50 points.

The Titans played their junior varsity team in part of the second half, when the Trojans held them from scoring any further. Yet, there was a noticeable change in Troy’s effort in the second half as well.

“I think the guys just understood that this is our house,” Haggerty said of their improvements in the second half. “Our guys played better, they were more fired up.”

But what Haggerty enjoyed most was seeing that fire come from among the players, he said.

“They just needed a little bit of an extra boost, and it was mostly from the players. The players fired themselves up,” he said.

Going into the game against Flint Creek, Haggerty said the team knew they were facing an extremely tough opponent with a proven record. With the Trojans still down several players, he told them to go out, play their game and have fun, he said.

“Fifty to six is not a bad game against the defending state champions and the number one ranked team in the state,” he said. “I was really proud of our guys’ effort the whole time.”

Given their odds, just getting a touchdown against the Titans was an accomplishment for the Trojans.

“Our goal was to get points up on the board, and we met that goal,” Haggerty said.

With only a minute and a half left in the game and the ball on the Titan’s 39 yard line, Troy senior Hunter Leighty carried their only touchdown of the game.

Discussing that touchdown pass, Haggerty said he liked what it said about the team.

“Everybody kept fighting until the end. We didn’t have guys quit. It shows the character our team has,” he said.

Haggerty praised the team’s quarterbacks, senior Cody Osterberg and junior Ricki Fisher.

“We play both of them at quarterback, and they’re both great team players,” he said.

Looking back on the game, Haggerty saw only positive things to say about the performance on the line, both defensively and offensively, and singled out senior Tyler Gromley for his example as a team player.

“He normally plays fullback for us, but due to injuries and such, we had to put him on the line,” Haggerty said. “He would’ve been playing fullback and getting carries, but instead he’s on the line.”

Yet, Gromley never has a word of complaint when called on to do what is needed, he said.

“He just went in there, and he played and he did the job,” he said. “Tyler Gromley played the best game out of anybody on the team today.”

“We’ve got a great group of guys. They’re a pleasure to coach, and I love all of them,” Haggerty said.

The Trojans will have their next game at Mission on Friday, starting at 7 p.m. Their next home game is Thursday, Sept. 13, at 7 p.m.

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