Troup stays perfect with blowout win

Published 12:18 am Friday, September 8, 2017

By Kevin Eckleberry

LAGRANGE – They’re still perfect.

The Troup Tigers wanted to finish the non-region portion of their schedule with a win to remain unbeaten, and they made that happen with a flourish.

Lamar County scored a touchdown late in the first half to get within 10, but Troup dominated the rest of the game to roll to a 62-10 victory.

Troup (4-0) is off next week before opening its Region 5-AAAA schedule against Chapel Hill.

“If I’m correct, Troup High has been open since 1956, and we’re only the seventh team in school history to be 4-0,” Troup head coach Tanner Glisson said. “And it’s the first time we’ve been 4-0 since 2005. So that’s a great feeling.”

Lamar County scored a touchdown with 59 seconds left in the first half to cut Troup’s lead to 20-10.

The Tigers, showing off their quick-strike ability, needed less than 30 seconds to score a touchdown of their own, with Montez Crowe finding Mark-Anthony Dixon for a 53-yard scoring pass to make it a 27-10 game at the break.

In the second half, Troup blew Lamar County out of the building to win going away.

“Emotionally, I thought we slept-walk through the first half,” Glisson said. “We made some adjustments in the second half.”

Glisson added that he let everyone knew during halftime that he wasn’t entirely pleased with the effort.

“I ripped into everybody, including the coaches at halftime,” Glisson said.

Macenta Stafford, who scored a touchdown on a punt return, said the message was received.

“Coach, he threw a case of water, and we knew it was time to go,” Stafford said.

Crowe, who is having a monster senior season, threw four touchdown passes, and backup quarterback Sydney Lawson had a pair of scoring passes.

Jamari Thrash had two touchdown catches, and Kenly Bridwell, Dixon, Kobe Hudson and Ja’Rell Smith each had one scoring reception.

Tyree Carlisle added a touchdown run.

Troup also got it done on special teams, with Dixon and Stafford each scoring on punt returns.

While the Tigers are happy to be unbeaten, Crowe said the focus remains on getting better day by day.

“We know we’re going to be off for two weeks, and we want to build off this,” Crowe said. “But we know we’ve got a lot of mistakes, so we’re going to go back to the drawing board. We just want to build off this and fix our little mistakes.”

The Trojans scored first with a field goal, but the Tigers answered with a Carlisle 18-yard touchdown run, and Carson Wreyford’s extra point gave the home team a 7-3 lead with 2:30 left in the first quarter.

The touchdown was set up by a 49-yard completion from Crowe to Thrash.

The Tigers padded their lead in the second quarter, with Crowe finding Bridwell for a 7-yard touchdown, and Wreyford made the extra point to push the lead to 14-3 with 5:29 to play in the half.

The Tigers needed just 16 seconds to score again.

After a Lamar County fumble, Crowe’s 23-yard touchdown pass to Thrash and Wreyford’s extra point put Troup on top 20-3.

After the Trojans scored, Crowe’s 53-yard scoring pass to Dixon and Wreyford’s extra point gave the Tigers a 27-10 cushion at the break.

The second half was all Troup.

Dixon started the second-half scoring barrage with a 50-yard punt return for a touchdown, and Cal Foster made the extra point to give Troup a 34-10 lead with 6:42 left in the third quarter.

Moments into the fourth quarter, it was Crowe dropping a 48-yard touchdown pass into the hands of Hudson, and Foster’s extra point pushed the lead to 41-10.

Following a Lamar County fumble, Lawson entered the game, and Troup didn’t miss a beat.

Lawson found Thrash for a 10-yard touchdown pass, and Foster’s extra point extended the lead to 48-10.

With 8:58 left in the game, Stafford returned a punt 46 yards for a touchdown, and Foster’s extra point gave Troup a 55-10 lead.

With 2:47 to play, Lawson tossed a 47-yard touchdown pass to Smith, and Foster made the extra point to cap the scoring.

Troup’s bread and butter offensively is the passing game, which is why the team continued to throw the ball with a big lead.

Glisson wanted Lawson to gain some experience running the offense in a game setting.

“Our backup needed to play, and what we do is throw the ball,” Glisson said. “But I don’t like that. That’s no fun for anybody.”

While Troup’s offense continued to overwhelm opponents, the defense delivered another strong performance.

“Defensively, I thought we did some good things,” Glisson said. “We’ll continue to try to get more physical.”