August 31st, 2018

Weather and Crusaders upend Trinity

Block_eric thorne

Eric Thorne

Staff Writer

Weather and Crusaders upend Trinity
file photo

 After suffering two late game losses to open the season against a pair of Indiana superpowers it was Mother Nature that sent Trinity to a 0-3 record after a weather cancelation with the Rocks trailing 21-14 to Cincinnati Moeller.

Trinity raced out to a 14-0 first quarter lead only to see the host Crusaders find the end zone on their next 3 possessions.

Both Trinity scores came off big plays from their special teams.

With their first drive stalled, Rocks punter Kaelan Racculia launched a kick that RJ Khayo fumbled at the Crusader 11-yard line and McCauley Beck recovered.

The Rocks needed just 2 plays and :06 seconds to score with Carter Martin running 11 yards to put the Rocks up 7-0 with 7:48 left in the first quarter. Sabastian Mata added the extra point.

Just three plays later the Rocks special teams put their team up 14-0 as Blake Ruffin blocked punter Brandon Cusmano’s kick. The sophomore recovered it himself and raced 10 yards for the touchdown with 5:16 left in the first quarter.

Moeller (2-0) then started a run of 21 unanswered points in a span of just over six minutes.

Chrystopher Watkins capped off a 9 play, 76 yard drive when he carried 3 yards for a Moeller touchdown with 2:22 left in the first quarter to cut the Trinity lead to 14-7.

On the Crusaders next series Khayo pulled in a 48-yard catch to the Rocks 4-yard line. After a Trinity penalty in the end zone with no time left in the quarter, Khayo carried in from 2 yards for the touchdown.

Trinity, reeling from a rash of injuries last week against Warren Central (Ind.) suffered another blow when Racculia was injured when he was roughed on a punt in the second quarter. The junior did not return.

Unable to move the ball again Moeller quarterback Mitch McKenzie hit Max Land for a 52-yard touchdown, and the Crusaders took their first lead at 21-14 with 8:01 left in the half.

McKenzie completed 6 of 9 passes for 165 yards to just three different receivers in Khayo (68 yards), Land (61) and Carrington Valentine (36).

Trinity’s special teams came up one final time late in the first half as Jacob Saylor blocked a 54-yard field goal attempt.

Moeller opened the second half by driving to the Trinity 5-yard line when the game was delayed and ultimately cancelled due to lightening.

The Crusaders outgained Trinity in total offense 263-79, and the Rocks were able to convert just 1 of 8 third downs.

Trinity had just six first downs in the game while rushing for 36 yards. Martin led the Rocks with 47 yards off 10 carries, and hauled in four passes for 19 yards.

Quarterback Seth Jutz completed 10 of 17 passes for 43 yards and tossed an interception.

The Rocks will play their first Kentucky opponent of the season next Friday when they return to Marshall Stadium to take on the state’s No. 1 ranked team Male.


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