Trojans explode for 80 points in wild victory
CRYSTAL FALLS—In some ways, the Forest Park-Superior Central Great Lakes Eight Conference football game on Sept. 13 was beyond description – one of those sporting events in which you had to be there to really get a sense of what transpired.
Of course, a look at the final tally – Forest Park 80, Superior Central 40 – gives a pretty apt description. But there was so much more than just the score to ponder.
Consider the following:
-Forest Park gained nearly 600 yards, including 454 on the ground.
-Superior Central went backwards on the ground due to FP sacks, but passed for 329 yards.
-The teams combined for 884 yards of offense.
-Trojan junior Gabe Scarlassara, who briefly practiced at tailback during the week, took over the position early after an injury to fullback Noah Gilner shifted starting tailback CJ Post to fullback, and rushed for 162 yards and three touchdowns. He also completed a 27-yard pass to quarterback Tommy Peltoma that set up a Trojan score.
-Superior Central recorded touchdowns of 87 yards, 91 yards, 70 yards, 76 yards and 54 yards, while only registering three first downs.
-The scoring started just 21 seconds into the game and the teams combined for four touchdowns in a four-minute stretch bridging the first and second quarters.
In a game that lasted approximately 2 hours and 45 minutes, including a 90-minute first half, the Trojans left a windswept Dick Mettlach Field with the decisive win, likely a school-record offensive output and their second straight victory.
Take a deep breath everyone.
“It was a longer game,” Post said smiling. “I kept on saying that the first half felt like it took forever. But we did as much as we could. And the second half speeded up and everything went as planned.”
“Overall, it’s good to come out with a victory,” FP coach Dave Graff said. “I think that we played very strong at times and other times, we had mistakes. However, there were some real high points.”
Before the “high points” began, the Trojans found themselves down 8-0 after SC junior quarterback Kyle Frusti hit Zach Englund with an 87-yard touchdown strike on the first play from scrimmage. After Frusti found Lucas Kanerva wide open for the 2-point conversion, Graff called a timeout and laid into his team about a lack of focus to start the game.
Whether it was the stern message or the fact that FP (2-1, 1-0) was simply a better team than Superior Central, the game turned around quickly. The Trojans went on a six-play, 43-yard scoring drive and evened the score two minutes later on a 7-yard run by Post. Every play except one went to the Trojan right side over guard Evan Hedtke, end Tommy Showers and fullback Gilner.
But Gilner, who also starts at middle linebacker, suffered what appeared to be a back injury and missed the rest of the game. In turn, Graff moved Post to fullback, Scarlassara to tailback and Tommy Peltoma to middle linebacker.
While Gilner is a vital part of the FP team, his loss in this game hardly seemed to put a dent in the Trojans, at least offensively. On their next drive, Forest Park drove 51 yards on four plays, culminated by Scarlassara’s 34-yard burst as FP took a 14-8 lead with 4:24 left in the opening quarter.