After a slow start marked by offensive miscues, the Meridian Trojans rolled to a 35-0 victory over the Chelan Mountain Goats in non-conference action on Friday, Sept. 19, at home.
Meridian turned the ball over twice, both times deep inside Chelan territory and also missed an extra point and slowed itself down with several penalties, resulting in a 6-0 lead at halftime.
But Meridian put on a show during the second half, scoring two touchdowns in the third quarter with a two-point conversion. The Trojans then finished the game strong with another two touchdowns to cap off their second win of the season, both against non-divisional opponents and improving to 2-1 overall.
The change in play wasn’t from a shift in strategy, Trojan head coach Bob Ames said, just a return to fundamentals.
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“We went out and executed,” Ames said. “We stopped dropping balls and we stopped jumping off sides.”
The Trojan defense held Chelan scoreless and only allowing 83 yards of total offense.
Trojan senior quarterback Tanner Tutterrow had a strong performance, despite throwing an early red-zone interception. Tutterrow finished the game 15 of 25 for 191 yards, two touchdowns and an interception. He also ran for 35 yards and a score.
Tutterrow, while satisfied with the win, felt there was room for improvement.
“I need to work on my reads, I threw a few bad throws, especially early,” He said.
Meridian’s offense was anchored by a reliable running game led by junior Dakota Jones and senior Kevin Castro. Jones ran for 90 yards on 17 attempts, giving the Trojans solid production throughout the game. Castro ran for 86 yards and a third quarter touchdown that gave the Trojan’s momentum for the rest of the game.
The running game opened up the rest of the offense, Tutterrow said. Forcing the defense forward to the line of scrimmage, which often left receivers open down field.
Speaking of Jones and Castro, Tutterrow simply said, “They’re really good when they run the ball.”
The Trojans play against their first Northwest Conference opponent Friday, Sept. 26, as they host Lynden Christian in Class 1A action.
Mer — Tanner Tutterrow throws 6 yards to Daniel Young (kick missed)
Mer — Kevin Castro 2 yard rush (Dakota Jones with the 2 point conversion)
Mer — Tanner Tutterrow throws 14 yards
Mer — Tanner Tutterrow 1 yard run (kick good)
Mer — Isaiah Thompson 2 yard rush (kick good)
MerFirst downs723Rushing Att-yards21-2938-222Comp-Att-Int9-22-017-27-1Passing yards66211Penalties-yards3-153-25Fumbles-lost1-00-0
RUSHING — Chelan: Donny Watson 4-9, Eli Jenkins 5-8, Mason McClellan 5-34, Tanner Johnson 3- (-5), Kevin Morris 1- (-2), Ty Miller 1- (-3), Zack Phelps 2- (-12). Meridian: Dakota Jones 17-90, Kevin Castro 10-86, Tanner Tutterrow 7-35, Dalton Biehle 2-5, Marcus McGuinn 1-4, Isaiah Thompson 1-2.
PASSING — Chelan: Zack Phelps 7-17-0-56, Eli Jenkins 1-4-0- (-2). Home: Cody Bachman 1-1-0-12, Tanner Tutterrow 15-25-1-191, Marcus McGuinn 1-2-0-8.
RECEIVING — Chelan: Bryce Robison 2-15, Derek Griffith 5-23, Molina Lane 1-7, Ty Miller 1-9. Meridian: Daniel Young 3-37, Tanner Tutterrow 1-12, Dakota Jones 2-23, Marcus McGuinn 4-56, Kevin Castro 2-28, Suki Virk 1-6, Cody Bachman 4-49.