Trenton Overwhelmed By Seventh-Ranked Team In The State, Falls 46-7
The Higginsville Huskers may have entered the season needing to replace some big holes at key positions, but they certainly looked the part of the seventh-ranked team in the state on Friday night in Trenton. The Huskers rolled into C.F. Russell Stadium and promptly handed the previously unbeaten Trenton Bulldogs a 46-7 homecoming loss.
“They play hard, they play fast and they play physical,” Trenton Head Coach Wes Croy said of Higginsville. “They aren’t afraid to take chances. This was a game that we felt would kind of tell us where we were and we found out we still have a way to go if we want to compete with the teams in the upper level of Class 2.”
Higginsville wasted little time putting the ball in the end zone, scoring on both of its first two possessions. The Huskers botched the point-after score, however, and failed to get in on a two-point conversion attempt following the second score. That left Trenton trailing 12-0 after a quarter of play.
Trenton would finally find the end zone on its first possession of the second quarter, driving down the field and scoring on an 18-yard pass from Dalton Ellis to Chris Kurtz. Jonathan Lamp nailed the point after kick and the window was still very much open for the Bulldogs, who trailed just 12-7.
That window shut quickly, however, as Higginsville exploded for three more scores before halftime. The Huskers answered Trenton’s scoring drive in short order capping a quick drive with a 23-yard touchdown run. The Huskers got in on a two-point try this time, however, and followed that up by pouncing on an onside kick and driving down the field for another touchdown. It was the second attempt at an onside kick by the Huskers in the half, but unlike the first time, the second try was a success much to the dismay of the Bulldogs.
“With their squib kicks they could have set us up with good field position,” Croy said. “I think they had enough confidence in their defense at that point that they felt like they could gamble and it paid off for them. When they had a chance to really step on the gas and put us in a bad position they responded well. They had that spurt in the second quarter that went a long ways toward putting the game out of reach. We had some things go south for us and we weren’t able to respond the way we need to if we are going to beat teams like them.”
Things would only get worse for the Bulldogs in the second half as Higginsville tacked on another touchdown in the third quarter to set up a running clock in the fourth quarter with Trenton trailing 39-7. Seemingly still with something to prove, Higginsville’s first string offense went down the field one final time in the fourth quarter, scoring to give the game what would be its final score of 46-7. Trenton nearly got in the end zone late in the game, but a fumble at the goal line, which Higginsville would recover in the end zone, denied Trenton a second score.
For the first time all season, Trenton was held without a 100-yard rusher. Colton Neff led Trenton with 87 yards, Bailey Owen had 37 and Travis Leeper finished with 17. Higginsville, meanwhile, had no trouble amassing yards through the air or on the ground. The Huskers had 278 rushing yards and 231 passing yards for a grand total of 509.
Things won’t be much easier for the Bulldogs this week as they travel to Kansas City to face Pembroke Hill Friday night. Kick off is set for 7 o’clock.
“Pembroke is 3-1, they are a Class 3 team and they were 9-2 a year ago,” Croy said. “It’s the same situation we had with Higginsville because they know how to win. We can’t feel sorry for ourselves going into this week. We have to have a productive week of practice, we have to put last week out of our minds and realize that this could be a huge win for us. It would be huge district-wise because we are moving up a class. Hopefully, we go down there and avoid the situation that got us in trouble against Higginsville. We feel good about our kids and we feel good about our football team. If we play sound football for four quarters and don’t put ourselves behind the eight ball too often too early then we can give ourselves an opportunity to win the football game.”
H – Marcus Elmore 11-yard pass from Matt Gibson (kick failed).
H – Colten Williams 1-yard run (pass failed).
T – Chris Kurtz 18-yard pass from Dalton Ellis (Jonathan Lamp kick).
H – Malcom Elmore 23-yard run (Gibson pass to Williams).
H – Williams 10-yard run (pass failed).
H – Malcom Elmore 16-yard run (kick blocked).
H – Williams 38-yard pass from Gibson (Matt Elder kick).
H – Malcom Elmore 6-yard run (Elder kick).
THS HHS First Downs 6 21
Rushes-Yards 27-131 47-278
Passing Yards 35 231
Comp.-Att.-Int. 5-12-1 11-13-0
Total Yards 166 509
Penalties-Yards 0-0 0-0
Fumbles-Lost 1-1 1-1
Punts-Avg. 5-26.6 0-0
RUSHING – Trenton, Colton Neff, 10-87; Bailey Owen, 6-37; Travis Leeper, 10-17; Dalton Ellis, 1-(-10). Higginsville, Malcom Elmore, 14-96; Marcus Elmore, 11-62; Colten Williams, 10-52; Ian Gash, 7-43; Christian Turner, 2-16; Matt Gibson, 2-8; Levi Kreie, 1-1.
PASSING – Trenton, Ellis, 5-12-1, 35 yards. Higginsville, Gibson, 11-13-0, 231 yards, 2 TDs.
RECEIVING – Trenton, Kurtz, 1-18; Aaron Anderson, 3-13; Cree Mullenix, 1-4. Higginsville, Blaine Wheeler, 2-55; Landon Figg, 2-51; Williams, 2-47; Malcom Elmore, 2-37; Dakota Russell, 2-30; Marcus Elmore, 1-11.
INTERCEPTIONS – Trenton, None. Higginsville, Wheeler, 1-1.
PUNTING – Trenton, Ellis, 5-133, 26.6 avg. Higginsville, None.
KICKOFF RETURNS – Trenton, Leeper, 2-51; Novie Rorebeck, 1-14; Charlie Hoffman, 1-13; Owen, 1-0; Gavin Griffin, 1-0; Alex Davis, 1-0.
DEFENSE – Trenton, Garrett Runnels, 14 tackles; Kurtz, 10 tackles; Trey Shields, 8 tackles; Owen, 5 tackles; Hoffman, 5 tackles; Mullenix, 4 tackles; Travis Gilbertson, 4 tackles, 1 fumble recovery; Josh Davis, 4 tackles; Troy Hanes, 3 tackles, 1 TFL; Griffin, 3 tackles; Dakota Schultz, 2 tackles; Leeper, 2 tackles; Brice Dillon, 1 tackle; Hunter Anderson, 1 tackle; Chanse Houghton, 1 tackle.