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Tigers defeat Blue Wave in Overtime

The Trenton Tigers kicked off their 2020 high school football regular season Friday night as the COVID-19 regulations took a back seat to the 7:30 p.m. scheduled kickoff. The THS Principal had been notified by FHSAA field officials that the game start time would be changed to 8:17 p.m. Trenton and PK Yonge fans were asked to leave “The Jungle” during the time the lightning was reported to be in the area. Just after 8 p.m., the fans were allowed to move back into the bleachers and outside of the north end zone where the Tiger faithful lined the boundary of the field with their chairs to support their Trenton Tigers. A group of Tiger fans moved to the south end zone to distance themselves in cooperation with the COVID-19 social distancing guidelines. The hot, humid, almost still evening weather was as hot as it had been at 3 p.m. that afternoon.
The Gilchrist School Board took action in their Tuesday afternoon meeting to increase the number of tickets to be sold at the home football game to 1000. The District had previously agreed to a total of 800 tickets could be sold for Friday nights home opener. By halftime football fans trying to buy a ticket to get into, “Friday Night Lights” were turned away due to attendance had reached the capacity of 1000 people in “The Jungle”.
When the Tiger’s four captains: Tyler Perry, Riley Buck, Caleb Grossman and Brent Carlisle met the Blue Wave team representatives at mid field; the Tigers won the toss and took the football on offense to get the game started.
These two teams battled for the first three quarters, as the Tigers scored on a 20 yard run by Caleb Morgan in the second period that was called back due to a Tiger penalty. The Blue Wave took the lead in the opening minute of the fourth period as Yarnell McCray dashed 20 yards for the score and a 7-0 lead following the PAT by Charlie Lawson.
The Tigers received the kickoff as Tristin Sloan ran up the Trenton sideline for a touchdown. Trenton’s KJ Williams ran through the Blue Wave defense to give the Tigers an 8-7 lead.
P. K.’s McCray received the kickoff and dashed 80-yards bye the Tiger’s kickoff team for a score. The Wave’s Phillip Miller ran for a 2-pt conversion to give the visitors a 15-8 lead.
Trenton’s Tyler Perry returned the kickoff to the PK 40 yard line. The junior quarterback scrambled through the Blue Wave defense on the next play for a Tiger score. Perry connected with Caleb Morgan on a 2-point conversion pass to give Trenton a 16-15 lead.
The Blue Wave had moved into the Tiger’s territory when quarterback Aaron Small connected with Jontez Williams for a 30-yard touchdown reception. P K took a 23-16 lead following a 2-point conversion run.
The Trenton Tiger fans were being entertained by non-stop football action as the cheerleaders and the Tiger band were keeping the fans on the edge of their seats. With 2:21 remaining in the fourth period, Trenton’s Tristin Sloan gets into the end zone for a Tiger score. The Tiger’s senior place kicker, Preston Blankenship stepped up to kick an extra point to tie this game at 23 all before regulation play ended.
The two teams took a short break before lining up for over-time. The Blue Wave took the ball first on the 10-yard line. Each team would receive four downs to score. As P K Yonge was going into the corner of the end zone for the score, Trenton’s defense led the charge as the quarterback was running away from a sack; he threw the pass into the end zone where junior cornerback, Jaron Riley picked off his second interception of the night to stop the Blue Wave offense.
The Tigers were given the football on the PK 5-yard line and had moved to inside the 2, when an official stopped the over time and moved Trenton back out to the 10-yard line where they would begin again with 1st and goal. The Tigers had moved to the 3-yard line when Blankenship entered the game. Tyler Perry would hold the ball as the senior kicker split the goal uprights for a deserving Tiger victory.
The Tigers played well in their first game considering the shortened practice time.
Trenton will travel to Newberry Friday night to face the Panthers. Newberry was defeated by Hawthorne, 20-14 Friday night in their first game of the season.
Get you tickets for this weeks’ contest at the Trenton High School office, Go Tigers.