A slow start from the defense hurt the Trenton Bulldogs chances for an upset of Illini West High School on Friday night, as despite two rallies in each half, the visitors from Carthage, Illinois escaped C.F. Russell Stadium with a 34-23 win over the Bulldogs, dropping Trenton's record to 4-3 on the season.
Illini West fullback Leighton Johnson finished with 23 carries for 272 yards rushing for the Chargers, including touchdown runs of 75 and 33 yards in the first quarter, and one yard in the third quarter.
After falling behind 12-0 in the first, it was the Bulldog offense that helped swing the momentum to Trenton, with the lethal combination of Dalton Ellis and Chris Kurtz combining for a scoring pass just before the quarter break. Tom Johnson had the play-by-play call:
Click here to listen to Chris Kurtz's TD catch
The Bulldogs, in the second quarter, got a defensive stop at the TWO-yard line, and embarked on an eight minute long drive that culminated with the lead, as sophomore back Colton Neff found the end zone from 13 yards away:
Click here to listen to Colton Neff's 13 yard TD run
Neff's two point conversion run made the halftime score 15-12 Bulldogs. Jonathan Lamp hit the extra point after the Kurtz score.
Momentum shifted back to Illini West in the third quarter, with the wingback (Jacob Sholl) scampering in from 41 yards with 9:40 to go in the quarter, and the one-yard plunge by Johnson, and a two-point catch by Ard, giving the Chargers a 26-15 lead after three quarters.
The Bulldogs wouldn't go quietly however, as Neff scored for the second time in the game (his sixth touchdown over the last two games), with 8:26 left in the contest:
Click here to listen to Neff's TD run and two-point conversion
Trenton's defense tried to get the ball back down by only three, but a muffed punt gave the Chargers new life, and Illini West converted a fourth-and-goal from the 1 yard line, with Austin Curfman barely getting the ball across, for the 9 point lead with 1:46 remaining. A two-point conversion catch by Ard gave Illini West the final points of the night.
Here, in its entirety, is the postgame interview with Tom Johnson, Quentin Albrecht, and Trenton Head Coach Wes Croy:
Click here to listen to the postgame interview with Coach Wes Croy
For Trenton High School, Colton Neff had a second straight strong game from the running back position, with 35 carries for 166 yards. The win improved Illini West's record to 5-2. Travis Leeper had 13 carries for 68 yards for the Bulldogs.
Trenton will play at Kirksville High School on Friday night, October 18th, in a 7 o'clock kickoff against the Tigers, scheduled for broadcast on Hot Country Z 101.7, with Football Frenzy starting coverage at 5:30. Kirksville was a 14-10 winner over Mexico last Friday night.
Here is the scoreboard from the past weekend (October 11th and 12th):
Milan 42, Schuyler County 0
King City 34, Princeton 29
South Harrison 68, Albany 0
Polo 64, Braymer 8
Maysville 36, Gallatin 26
Savannah 49, Chillicothe 21
Cameron 38, Lafayette 27
Maryville 50, Smithville 10
LeBlond 27, Benton 10
Scotland County 41, Knox County 26
Putnam County 46, North Shelby 12
Kearney 42, Staley 0
Palmyra 35, Brookfield 7
Macon 49, Mark Twain 0
Marceline 72, Fayette 16
Westran 34, Salisbury 7
Lexington 28, Carrollton 12
Higginsville 43, Knob Noster 0
Holden 24, Richmond 20
Lawson 47, Hamilton 20
Mid-Buchanan 27, West Platte 14
Lathrop 51, Plattsburg 27
East Buchanan 44, North Platte 9
Kirksville 14, Mexico 10
Southwest Livingston 64, Stewartsville 14