East Troy High School quarterback Jake Dessart runs the ball in for a touchdown during the Aug. 25 win over Big Foot High School. The Trojans won the game with Dessart’s 2-point conversion run with 28 seconds left in the game. (Eric Kramer photo)

Trojans take down Big Foot, 48-47

By Timothy Wester Jr.


In most games, East Troy High School’s football team would assume a 1-point lead with 28 seconds left would mean a sure victory.

But when the opposing team has Jackson Enz, you don’t take anything for granted. Trojan quarterback Jake Dessart took that lesson to heart Aug. 25, turning his back on the field for the final 28 seconds as Big Foot’s standout quarterback went to work.

Dessart eventually heard the roar from the home crowd as the Enz’s final pass at the Trojans 25-yard-line sailed out of bounds to give East Troy a 48-47 victory in a Rock Valley Conference classic.

Although Enz finished the game with seven touchdowns and 451 total yards, it was Dessart’s 4-yard touchdown run and gritty 2-point conversion run that propelled East Troy (2-0) to a heart-stopping marathon win.

“That was probably one of the hardest fought football games I’ve ever played, but it was a team win,” said Dessart, who had four touchdowns and 325 total yards. “I had to turn around and look away when Jackson had the ball last. He is one heck of a player and athlete.”

In the end, the Trojans physical running attack won out over the big play Chiefs’ offense. East Troy racked up 445 rushing yards on 65 carries to wear down the Big Foot defense late in the game. Dessart was the biggest benefactor, leading his team on an 80-yard scoring drive capped by his 4-yard touchdown and point-after runs to give East Troy a 48-47 lead.

“When we started running the ball our final scoring drive, I was seeing our offensive line was getting a push,” East Troy coach Jeff Crandall said. “I was thinking if we get down there, we can get two yards on a two-point play.”

The gutsy decision paid off, but the unforgettable game still had 28 seconds left, which meant Enz had a final chance to respond.

On that final drive, East Troy defensive back Miles McCarthy intercepted Enz deep in East Troy territory with just three seconds left. But the celebration was brief as a defensive penalty returned possession to the Big Foot, setting up on final play at the East Troy 25.

Enz then turned and scrambled left and heaved a pass towards the right corner of the end zone toward an open Greco. But the ball sailed just a few feet wide of Aidan Greco and fell incomplete out of bounds.

“Jackson blames himself for losing the game because of that final pass, but there were so many plays in this game that factor into the final score,” Big Foot coach Greg Enz said. “Sometimes it says more about a person’s character when they are willing to say I should have accomplish that.”

Both teams showed moments of great character in the game. The Chiefs jumped out to a 27-14 second quarter lead before the Trojans scored 29 unanswered to take a 33-27 lead in the second half.

Enz, however, responded with three fourth quarter touchdowns, including a 27-yard run to put his team up 47-40 with just under 4 minutes left.

But the final minutes belonged to East Troy, which eventually outlasted the Chiefs.

“This win gives us more confidence,” Crandall said. “We have a lot of young guys playing on defense and they were able to come through with a win at the end and gives them confidence that they can play with some good teams and going forward, do what we can do.”


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