Troy Defeats Timberland
September 25, 2012By Par Pitts of Troy Buchanan Football
oll's Interception Highlights Troy's 41-20 Win Over Timberland, written by Steve Runge
On another Friday night under the lights, the Troy Trojans squared off against the Timberland Wolves on the road as Timberland was celebrating their 2012 Homecoming. Pre-game ceremonies and fan participation at Timberland filled the air with excitement as the home crowd filled the stands. Game time temperature was a comfortable 70 degrees and the smell of popcorn and BBQ filled the air.
Troy opened the game by kicking off to Timberland, and the first quarter of football went back and forth as the team's measured each other up defensively. Timberland brought two outstanding defensivebacks to the game. The Wolves had #2 ranked Austin Grubbs with 37 solo tackles on the year, and #7 ranked Travis Arndt with 4 interceptions on the year. Troy, on the oher hand, brought the #4 ranked leading scorer in Devon Fuller. The matchup between Fuller and Grubbs remained a real chess match throughout the game.
The first quarter ended with Timberland in the lead, up by 3 after an Arndt field goal. However, Troy responded in a hurry on the ensuing possession with a drive that led to a Ben Chaney touchdown on a one yard run up the middle. Chaney, the Trojans QB, had 189 yards rushing on Howell Central the week before, and was definately one the Wolves needed to keep under control. Chaney would go on to score three touchdowns in the Timberland game.
Timberland later scored on an Arndt field goal, and as the first half closed out, they scored again on a Bainbridge pass into the endzone on the right side. Timberland headed to the locker room with a 13 to 7 lead over Toy, and many of the Troy fans sat in wonder of how the game would play out.
This lead was a real boost in the moral of a Timberland program that brought a record of 1 and 3 to the game, and the fans were full of life as they watched a very entertaining halftime show by the Timberland Marching Band.
As both teams came oout of the locker room and onto the field, the Timberland Wolves were hyped up as they gathered at mid field, and carried on with high fives and an accelerated team spirit. Across the way, Troy was noticeably silent and still, and rather reserved as they prepared to kick off.
However, on the opening drive of the second half, Timberland turned the ball over on their own side of 50 yard line, and Troy shifted into high gear. From then on, Coach Par Pitts and the Troy Trojans were in full control. Chaney would take it to the house once again on a quarterback keeper up the middle to score from one yard out. Troy took the lead 14 to 13 in the middle of the third quarter. Then, Linebacker Justin Sutphin, one of Troy's leading tacklers, picked up a Bainbridge fumble in the Timberland end zone for a touchdown at the start of the fourth quarter, extending Troy's lead 21 to 13.
The teams traded touchdowns once again in the middle of the fourth quarter with a 3 yard run from Troy's Devon Fuller, and a three yard run from Timberland's Bryce Becker to make the score 28 to 20.
Although Troy appeared to be in firm control of the game, it appeared Timberland was just pesky enough to hang in there, until Ben Chaney busted open with a 65 yard touchdown run from the Troy 35 yard line. Out of the Power I formation, Chaney faked a handoff to Sutphin, and took it between the Left Tackle and Left Guard, and hit high speed down the far sidelines. This gave Troy a 35 to 20 lead, and the Timberland fans, with 4:16 to go in the game, were silenced.
Offensively, Troy, who came into the game as the top scoring team in the Gateway Athletic Conference with 110 points, really demonstrated the Coach Pitts style of unstoppable ground and pound. However, on the defensie side of the ball, the Trojans made a major statement with over the top play. Defensive End Dalton Gilbert had arguably the best game of his high school career with four sacks on the night and five tackles. Linebacker Dusty Heise had 8 solo tackles on the night. Linebacker Justin Sutphin had a fumble recovery in the end zone, and the defense as a whole held the Wolves to only 180 yards rushing.
However, the one player who most teams have avoided all year, Defensiveback Robert Noll, showed everyone why Troy has one of the most respected secondaries in the GAC South. With already two interceptions on the year, Noll reeled in a pick six at the Troy 40 yard line. While the ball was in the air, the game buzzer sounded to end the game. Noll caught the Bainbridge pass intended for Timberland's Kyle Fletcher on the near sideline. Noll then reminded everyone that he came up as a little league runningback and wide receiver, and he too, can can take it to the house. Noll brought the Troy crowd to their feet as he weaved through the Timberland players and gave Troy another 6 points to add to the score. The final score was Troy 41, Timberland 20.
Troy improved their record to 4 and 1 on the season, and records show this is their best start since 1988. Troy faces off against the team atop the GAC South, Francis Howell, at home next Friday night. Howell defeated Ft. Zumwalt West 38 to 7 to maintain their top spot. However, Troy still leads in points scored over Howell 151 to 146. According to Jim Powers of 590 KFNS, the Troy / Howell game is in the mix to be voted on as one of the 590 KFNS Sports Caravan games to be covered next Friday night. Fans can go to www.kfns.com to vote for the game to be covered. All Troy football games however are aired live on 1280 AM, orwww.westplexnewstalk.com. The game was also recorded at www.mancardsports.com and can be heard by clicking on the "live broadcast" tab.