Sports High School Sports

Trojan offence struggles in loss to Eagles

PCI fell to 1-3 on the year after an 11-1 loss to Dryden Thursday night in WHSFL action. (File photo)

PCI fell to 1-3 on the year after an 11-1 loss to Dryden Thursday night in WHSFL action. (File photo)

Aaron Wilgosh - Daily Graphic Contributor

One mistake was the difference maker.

The Portage Collegiate Institute (PCI) Trojans varsity football team fell 11-1 to the reigning champion Dryden Eagles Thursday night in Dryden, Ont., in Winnipeg High School Football League (WHSFL) Vidruk division action to fall to 1-3 on the year.

“We decided to go into the game with a little bit of a different game plan,” says Trojans’ head coach, Donald Burrell. “We went in looking to utilize the run, and knowing we weren’t going to be passing, we prepped the players to be ready for that type of game and it was working until an unfortunate fumble late in the third quarter.”

It was a physical match-up that saw the Trojans and Eagles butt heads throughout the game as both were looking to keep the ball on the ground. PCI held the defending champs to just a field goal in the first half but couldn’t find a way onto the scoreboard, trailing 3-0 at the break.

Things broke down for PCI late in the third quarter when the Trojans fumbled the ball on their own five-yard line. The Eagles recovered and were able to turn the generous field position into eight points to take an 11-0 lead. PCI managed to kick a field goal attempt through the end zone for a single point in the fourth but couldn’t muster any further offence.

“It was the best defensive game all year from our players,” says Burrell. “We lost this game on a coaching error. It’s my responsibility for putting them in the situation and calling a particular play. I look at the type of loss it was and it’s one of those ones we can build on. When you hear a coach say that, it’s because the team played so well.”

The Trojans are now 1-3 this season but Burrell insists there’s no reason to panic as the team will return to practice Monday with a winning attitude and approach their next game with positivity. Next up for the Trojans is the winless Elmwood Giants (0-4), kickoff set for 4:30 p.m. Thursday at PCI Field in Portage.

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