Regular season football action kicked off in Trion as the Coosa Eagles swooped into town looking to avenge a 14-17 loss to the Bulldogs last season. Coach Justin Brown’s crew were still high on a big scrimmage performance and seemed prepared to repeat last season’s opener as tailback, Rob Brown broke loose early in the first quarter with a 32-yard touchdown run. But Coosa was not ready to go quietly into the night and answered with two scoring drives of their own. The 14-point scoring flurry was aided by a big kickoff return for the Eagles and then, a costly interception by the Bulldogs.
Trailing 7-14 going into the second quarter, Trion never lost their confidence. The Bulldog defense was solid all night and, following the first quarter, only allowed four Eagle 1st downs for the remainder of the game. In fact, Coosa managed less than 20 yards of total offense after the 1st quarter and 116 total yards of offense on the night. “After the first two Coosa scores, the defense really locked down and took the game over,” Bulldog Head Coach Justin Brown said.
In the second quarter, Connor Deparlier came up big with an interception that swung the momentum in favor of the home team. Senior quarterback Lincoln Maddux connected with Kodiak Crabbe on a 33-yard TD strike on the very next play and was the first of two touchdowns for the duo. Maddux found Crabbe again in the fourth quarter for a 23-yard touchdown, making the score 26-14, which would be the final.
With a 14-14 halftime score, the Trion staff made some adjustments and refocused on the fundamentals. “The kids never panicked and we made some adjustments at halftime,” Brown said.
The story of the game was the Trion Defense and the relentless pressure they applied on Coosa’s quarterback. The Bulldog defense was credited with five sacks and four quarterback pressures. “I was very proud and excited for our guys. Our kids played very fast and physical. This is a fun bunch of kids to coach and they play the game the right way.” said Defensive Coordinator Roone Gable. ” We have 6-7 seniors that start for us defensively and their leadership showed during the first quarter when Coosa jumped out on us. They didn’t panic and they executed our game plan perfectly after that,” said Gable.
Leaders on Defense:
Will Wyatt 10 total tackles
Bryce Wallin 8 total tackles, 1 tackle for loss
Kodiak Crabbe 5 total tackles, 2 tackles for loss, 4 quarterback pressures
Brantley Wilbanks 5 total tackles and 3 sacks
Clay Baker 4 tackles and 2 sacks
Alex Stewart 4 tackles and 1 tackle for loss
“It’s always great to start 1-0. We had some good special teams play, and that’s nice to see doing it live for the first time. We have a lot of things to work on this week and correct. However, the effort and the physicality was at a high level,” Brown said.
The Bulldogs are off this Friday and will travel to Dade County on September 6th.