October 30th, 2020

Mitchell's 4 TD's make for special Senior night

Block_eric thorne

Eric Thorne

Staff Writer


Mitchell's 4 TD's make for special Senior night
Jack Mitchell gets set and eyes quaterback Nathan McElroy. The pair combined for 4 touchdowns. (photo by Eric Thorne)

Trinity’s Nathan McElroy and Jack Mitchell made the most of senior night as the duo connected on four touchdown passes to lead the Rocks to a 42-7 win over visiting Bowling Green on Friday night.

Mitchell caught all four passes thrown to him for touchdowns and now has six on the season. His 88 receiving yards in the game gave him a team leading 202 for the year.

“I didn’t play football after my freshman and sophomore year just basketball last year,” Mitchell said. “But I just decided this year to come back and play as many sports as I could before I graduated.”

The night was somewhat bittersweet for Mitchell as well with his father Don was unable to be on the field with him after he passed away before Jack’s freshman year.

“My friends dad (Eric Stearman) walked me out tonight, but I really wanted to play this game for my dad,” Jack said.

Fellow senior Bradley West tallied the two other scores on touchdown runs of five and nine yards and finished with a total of 133 yards on 25 carries.

McElroy completed 23 of 31 passes for 257 yards and one interception while on the ground Trinity ran up 260 yards.

“Tonight, is pretty special being senior night, but honestly it just makes me more anxious because I just need to get out there on the field and go, go, go,” McElroy said snapping his fingers.

Bowling Green (5-2) came into the game allowing just 4.7 points per game and scoring 26. Unfortunately, the Purples could only muster a pair of first downs - both on penalties. Quarterback Connor Cooper was just 4 of 15 for 17 yards while the Purples rushed for only 34 yards.

“It wasn’t bad tonight, but we still left maybe 21 points on the field, but overall, it was an alright performance against the good defense we faced,” McElroy said.

Trinity coach Bob Beatty echoed the defensive performance.

“The defense was outstanding and even those two on penalties I didn’t see out there so that I’d say is outstanding,” Beatty said.

Trinity (6-0) took the opening kickoff and moved 65 yards in 10 plays that was capped off by West driving it in from five yards out with 7:58 to play in the first quarter.

Following a Purples punt McElroy tossed a perfect pass to a wide-open Mitchell at the 3-yard line and he walked in for the score making it 14-0 with 6:35 left in the quarter.

On the Rocks third possession it was McElroy and Mitchell hooking up again with a 29-yard touchdown. McElroy spun to avoid defenders and lasered a pass to Mitchell tiptoeing the sideline at the five-yard line. He pivoted and drug a defender in for the score.

“Nathan and I talked freshman year about what it would be like out here on senior night, but then I didn’t play last year and told him I would be cheering for him and he said no you’re not cheering you’re going to be playing out here with me,” Mitchell said.

Facing a third and six on the Rocks first possession of the second half McElroy rolled out right to throw but Augstin Nyembo read it perfectly and returned it 53 yards down the sideline for a Bowling Green touchdown cutting the lead to 21-7.

“Well my defense is probably mad at me for blowing that shutout there,” McElroy said.

Trinity answered right back moving 53 yards in just seven plays and it was West again jutting thought the middle for a nine-yard score as his offensive line opened a huge hole.

On the opening play of the final quarter it was McElroy and Mitchell for a third time on a five-yard touchdown in the back of the endzone making it 35-7.

The duo etched the final margin with a 15-yard pitch and catch.

“Jack and I didn’t really talk much about the game before senior night and we just kind of let it happen and its pretty surreal,” McElroy said. “I have played baseball against him since we were probably eight and he was really flippin’ good at that too - not surprisingly in centerfield. And we played basketball too against each other but really connected the first-time freshman year and it’s been magical since.”

Wynton Johnson also pulled down six catches for 88 yards for Trinity.

“This is a special group of seniors we have all 42 of them and my back hurts standing out there before the game with introductions, but it’s a tight knit class with outstanding leadership,” Beatty said. “At halftime I thought we were a little dead so I told the seniors not to come out of this huddle until you take care of business and we gained energy in the second half.”

Trinity is scheduled to host another Class 5A team in North Laurel (3-5) next Friday in the regular season finale at 7 pm. The Jaguars will make the 150-mile journey from London.

 

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