On a near freezing night in Glouster, the chill clearly made it to the players on the field. Ball security and catching were issues across the board for both squads as Trimble (2-7, 2-1 TVC — Hocking) fell 30-6 to Waterford (6-3, 4-0 TVC — Hocking).
Whether it had been good defense or bad offense, both teams struggled mightily to move the ball to start this one. Neither the Tomcats nor Waterford reached opposing territory until two minutes left in the first quarter.
“The weather didn’t have anything to do with the loss,” Phil Faires, the head coach of the Tomcats said. “This year we’ve just been waiting for bad things to happen and they seem to find us. I think Waterford had six fumbles, maybe seven, and we didn’t get any of them.”
It seemed as if Trimble had found a groove, driving down the field primarily through the ground game. They were able to reach near the Wildcats 30-yard line before fumbling.
Trimble ran into a bit of misfortune in the second quarter. Getting consistent pressure all night, the Tomcats were able to get to the Waterford quarterback and force him to cough up the ball. In all reality, Trimble had a majority of players around the ball and should’ve came away with possession.
The Wildcats recovered, and the next play resulted in a pass interference on Trimble that now put the Wildcats into Tomcat territory mere seconds after a near disaster.
“We were covering up their receivers, we were putting extra men outside and we had to hope we made some tackles inside, and if they broke a tackle it would be a big play,” Faires said about what mistakes led to the big plays for Waterford.
A few plays later, Lane Cline was able to take an inside handoff up the middle at the goal line and punch it in for the first score of the night.
Waterford was able to increase their lead to 14-0 on the next drive, capped off by a screen pass to Gaibe Ponchak that the senior took down the left sideline for the score.
With things looking bleak and minutes left in the first half Trimble was able to build momentum heading into the break, highlighted by an absurd catch from Max Frank on a deep pass where the junior went over the defender and legitimately ripped the ball out of his hands.
The Tomcats went down the field and Brandon Burdette was able to find Frank in the back of the end zone for a three-yard score, making it a one-score game.
They couldn’t capitalize on the newfound momentum, though, as Waterford took the ball to start the second half and drove down the field for the score on the opening possession.
“Put it a little pressure on them, if we go in to halftime we can make it one score then you can put a little bit of pressure on them. We did score, but we didn’t put pressure on them, they came out and scored the second half. We have a young team and we hope we learn from this.”
Scrambling out to the right, Jake Pantelidis was able to throw a 20+-yard dart while falling out of bounds to hit a diving Max Roberts to help make it a 22-6 game early into the second half.
Waterford’s Dylan Taylor took a near 40-yard score mid way through the fourth quarter to put this one out of reach.
Trimble finishes the regular season next week when they travel out to Crown City to take on South Gallia in a final TVC matchup.