The turnaround was undeniable for the Troy Trojans football team.
Heading into this season, the Trojans had won ten games combined over the past four years, and when the season began, coach Matt Burgbacher knew it would be an improved team.
The Trojans lived up to the expectations.
Friday night, the Trojans saw their special season come to an end, as they lost to Miamisburg 28-21 in the second round of the Division Two OHSAA state football playoffs. The Trojans finished the season 10-2, equaling the number of wins they had the previous four years, and saw their only losses on this season come at the hands of Miamisburg,
Troy couldn’t capitalize on their first opportunity of the game, as Jacob Anderson recovered a Vikings fumbled on the second play of their opening drive giving the ball to the Trojans around midfield.
Both punters saw plenty of action in the opening period, leading up to the games’ first score from the Vikings. Tony Clark found the endzone with two minutes gone in the second period to break a scoreless tie, and give the Vikings a 7-0 lead.
Troy answered when they put together a six play, 60 yard drive to tie the game. Hayden Hotwica hit Hayden Jackson on a 13-yard pass play to set the Trojans up inside Vikings territory, and when Kotwica connected with Spencer Klopfenstein from 10 yards out with 8:26 left in the first half, the game was tied at 7-7.
Miamisburg couldn’t capitalize on a big play on their next drive, which was aided by a personal foul against the Trojans, and they were forced to punt.
The Vikings regained the lead with 2:29 left in the half after taking the ball deep inside the Trojans territory after Troy was forced to punt from their own endzone.
A pass from Tate Vongsy to Quinn Keuhnle from 17 yards out gave the Vikings the lead, giving the Trojans one final shot to tie the game before the half.
Kotwica hit Jackson with a 20 yard pass in the final minute to the Vikings 16 yard line set up the Trojans in prime scoring position, but Kotwica was picked off on their next play, and the Vikings held onto their seven point lead at the half.
After turning the ball over to open the third quarter, the Trojans fought back using their defense in the third period.
Troy turned the ball over after touching a punt which then became a live ball recovered by Miamisburg in Trojans territory. Sam Jackson then tied the game when he picked off a pass for the Trojans and returned it 51 yards for the tying touchdown with 5:29 left in the third.
The Trojans then caught a break when the kickoff was fumbled away by the Vikings, giving Troy possession at the Vikings 45. Kotwica capped off the short drive with a 22 yard touchdown run and with just over three minutes left in the third period, Troy had a 21-14 lead.
Unfortunately the Trojans offense couldn’t find the endzone again, and when the Vikings blocked a Troy punt with five minutes left, they would capitalize. With the game tied at 21, a long touchdown run sent the Vikings up 28-21, and ended the Trojans season at 10-2.
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