Friday, October 02, 2009

Troy 27 Vandalia Butler 6

Early on, it didn't look like this one was necessarily going to go the Trojans' way. Butler took the opening kickoff and put together a pretty impressive opening drive, draining eight minutes from the clock and working their way into Troy's red zone. It wouldn't have been terribly surprising, at that point, if they had managed to score, and who knows where the game would have gone from there? However, as the drive went on, it looked more and more like Troy's defense was adjusting. They managed to push the Aviators back out of the red zone and keep them from scoring, and it was pretty much all Trojans from there.

Troy's offense has had some issues this year, struggling at times to move the ball, and thus to score points. It looked like they got some of the kinks in their Wing-T offense worked out tonight, though. Fullback Chris Basil became the first player of the season to rush for over 100 yards, the longest a Steve Nolan-coached team has ever gone into a season without a player reaching that mark. In addition, sophomore tailbacks Isaiah Williams and Marcus Foster ran for 83 and 72 yards, respectively. With QB Greg Yahle offering a threat to throw the ball as well, it seems like the offense is finally rounding into form.

The defense was impressive as well, which it has been for most of the year. In particular, I was impressed tonight with how hard they were hitting. Anytime an Aviator receiver had to leave the ground to attempt a catch, they did so at their own risk. The defense also brought the lumber to Butler's quarterback on one memorable scramble attempt - the poor kid lowered his shoulder to try to run the defender over, and ended up getting trucked himself instead.

The Trojans now find themselves at .500 (3-3) six games into the season. They'll be tested next week when the 5-1 Lebanon Warriors come to town. Hopefully Troy will be able to keep things rolling on both sides of the ball.

UPDATE: As a sidenote, I also wanted to mention that, after the game, I went to a local restaurant to meet my wife and some friends for drinks. While there I met and got to chat with the father of a couple of former Trojan halfbacks, one of whom is a program legend and the other (pretty good in his own right) who now is an assistant coach for the team. He was a really cool guy, and it was fun to chat with him a little bit about his sons and about football in general.

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