Let's get this part out of the way up front: my nephew Dylan was Piqua's starting center, and this was his senior night. That makes things a little uncomfortable for me. I wanted him to do well, of course, but no amount of nephews on the roster could actually make me want the team to win (against anyone, really, but especially against Troy).
Anyway, because it was Dylan's senior night, my dad came to the game with me, the first time we've been to a football game together in 22 years--another Troy-Piqua game, in fact: the 1992 playoff game at Welcome Stadium. I was a high school sophomore, and Dad took me and my friends Patrick and Jason down to the game. Superstitious folks might suggest I should reconsider asking him to future games, as both times resulted in Troy losses.
The night was cold, wet, windy, and mostly miserable. Sometimes that can be an equalizer, but that requires one team to be less affected by the conditions than the other. On this night, that was not the case. Piqua was, as their final 5-5 record would indicate, a perfectly average football team, but that still put them well ahead of the Trojans. (And yes, it hurt to type that.) Troy's defense held them in check fairly well for a long time, keeping the game close for probably longer than it should have been; it was only 14-3 at halftime. But with the offense unable to muster anything, the defense just wore out, resulting in long touchdown runs for each of Piqua's two backs and the lopsided final score (which included, yes, one more dose of the dreaded running clock--only for the final 2:38, but still).
Losing to Piqua sucks. Losing three in a row to Piqua sucks. Losing to Piqua to end the season sucks. Finishing the season 1-9 sucks; but, at the same time, the season being over also sucks. Plenty of suck to go around. Now the long wait begins for next season, exactly 43 weeks from now. Look for a season wrap within a few days.