East Troy High School’s Dylan Jakscht scores a touchdown in the Sept. 22 game against Jefferson. The Trojans lost the conference matchup, 42-28. (Eric Kramer photo)

Football team can’t come back from early deficit

By Dan Truttschel

Correspondent

At two different points Friday night, the East Troy football team fell behind by 20 points to visiting Jefferson.

But as has been the case all year, the Trojans never quit

Unfortunately, one last comeback late in the contest fell just short in a 42-28 Rock Valley Conference loss that dropped East Troy to 4-2 overall. Jefferson improved to 5-1 and into a second-place tie with Beloit Turner, which lost a 7-6 slugfest Friday to 6-0 Clinton.

“We played really well at times, we just were not consistent enough to win the game,” East Troy coach Jeff Crandall said. “We had some costly penalties as well.”

Seeing his team hang in there with the Eagles didn’t surprise Crandall.

“Our players have battled all year,” he said. “They stay positive and know we can come back and win, that as long as there is time on the clock we will keep on fighting.”

Jefferson’s Evan Anfang, who rushed for 227 yards on 28 carries, gave Jefferson a 35-14 lead with a 62-yard touchdown late in the third quarter.

But two straight East Troy touchdowns gave the Trojans hope.

Jake Dessart scored on a 1-yard run with 7:54 left in the game, and then connected on a 21-yard touchdown pass to Damien Timm with 2:11 remaining that pulled East Troy within a touchdown a 35-28.

“Timm ran a good route,” Crandall said. “We had a good pass, and Timm broke a tackle and made a guy miss.”

Jefferson locked up the win with one final score, a 16-yard touchdown run by Nolan Klawitter, who finished with 213 yards on 19 carries.

But it was Klawitter’s 79-yard jaunt to the end zone late in the third quarter that was the back breaker. East Troy had cut the deficit to 20-14 on a 1-yard run by Dessart before Klawitter and Anfang’s two-point conversion run rebuilt the Eagles’ lead back to 14 points.

“That play was the difference in the game,” Crandall said. “Klawitter broke a tackle and then was able to outrun the rest of the defense.”

Eagles start fast

Jefferson raced out to a 20-0 lead late in the first half on an 18-yard touchdown pass from Zack Peterson to Matt Siefkes and runs of 10 and 11 yards by Anfang and Klawitter.

But East Troy answered back, as Dylan Jakscht, who rushed for 100 yards on 23 carries, scored on a 1-yard run, followed by a 1-yard run by Dessart.

“We had two good drives that were capped by Dylan and Jake having short runs to get in for the score,” Crandall said. “Jake and Dylan ran hard all night. The offensive line opened holes for them.”

With a quick 20-point deficit, both scoring drives were important ones, Crandall said.

“Keeping the game close is always a good thing,” he said. “It keeps the energy up at a higher level as the game proceeds.”

Dessart led the Trojans in rushing with 21 carries for 167 yards, as both he and Jakscht were a formidable duo for the Eagles to try and contain, Crandall said.

“Jake and Dylan have been running hard all year,” he said. “They usually do not go down on the first hit, and they both look to punish the tackler.

“The (offensive) line of (Logan) Roberts, (Jacob) Mast, (Chris) Storandt, (John) Marschke and (Noah) Bearce have done a great job of executing blocks and giving our backs running lanes.”

Trojans on the road

Next up for East Troy is a trip to Evansville-Albany tonight for a 7 p.m. RVC matchup with the Blue Devils.

Evansville improved to 3-3 last week with a 41-6 victory at Whitewater.

There is little doubt how the Blue Devils will try and attack, Crandall said.

“Evansville likes to run right at you out of multiple formations,” he said. “(But) this year, they have been passing more than in the past. Defensively, they like to try to put pressure on you by blitzing.

“We need to clean up our penalties, we need to play physical and win the battle at the line of scrimmage on both sides of the ball.”

With a win Friday, the Trojans will clinch a WIAA Division 3 playoff berth for the third straight season. East Troy fell, 21-20 to Platteville in a first-round contest last year and 7-6 to Big Foot in the opening round in 2015.

 
 

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