A valiant effort
Trojans quarterback Tyler Morris was swarmed early and often in PCI's 40-13 loss to St. Paul's Crusaders Thursday night. (Aaron Wilgosh/Graphic)
They knew it would be a tough one.
Key injuries and multiple penalties hindered Portage Collegiate Institute's (PCI) shot at taking down divisional powerhouse St. Paul's, as the Trojans fell 40-13 on their home field in Winnipeg High School Football League (WHSFL) Vidruk Division action in Portage Thursday.
“We had some good plays early we just don't finish, and I have to do a better job in preparing the coaches and players in that kind of situation,” says Trojans head coach, Donald Burrell. “Overall this season we've gotten a lot better, and we'll have a shot at playoffs but we'll be at the bottom.”
The Crusaders got on the board early with a 1-yard touchdown run, the only scoring play in an otherwise tightly contested first quarter. To make matters worse, veteran receiver/running back Tyler Fedak suffered an injury early in the game to end his night early.
The Trojans offence struck in the second courtesy of kicker Conner Green, who split the upright twice before half but St. Paul's answered with a major score of their own to take a 17-6 lead into the third.
Portage got their only major of the third quarter when quarterback Tyler Morris connected with receiver Justice Flett, who crossed the goal line for the only Trojan major of the game. The Trojans defensive unit managed to hold the Crusaders to just three points in the quarter to trail by just seven heading into the final frame.
However it was all St. Paul's in the final quarter thanks to a list of penalties totalling over 100 yards against the Trojans. The Crusaders found the end zone twice with running plays while also kicking two field goals to run away with a 40-13 victory.
“We've had a discipline problem since I took over this team, and our players need to be a little more in control,” adds Burrell. “I didn't think that all of the penalties were clear but you can't make that an excuse. I think we could have played a little better, and the score makes it seem like we didn't play very hard, but our team gave it their all.”
The Trojans will find out next week whether they'll be taking part in any WHSFL playoff action.