High School Football

Facing the Giant: Trinity takes on defending state champs

by Chris Goltermann

Trinity Christian’s football team doesn’t have to look far to find a motivational tool when preparing to face defending GISA Class AAA state champion Westfield School for the third time in as many years this Friday in its home opener.

There’s plenty of dark horse stories that have been played out in film. “Miracle,” “Hoosiers,” and “Facing the Giants” would all be recommendable material.

Or they could just simply turn their bibles to 1st Samuel for the oldest underdog triumph of all time.

Either way, Lions head coach Chris Hanson’s job this week was to keep his team believing that better days are ahead following a dis- appointing 0-2 start, not always an easy task considering arguably the best opponent Trinity may face all season is staring them down this week.

Westfield, which has gone 195- 65-3 in head coach Ronnie Jones’ 22 seasons, was finally able to celebrate a state title last year following a string of close finishes that included four state runner-up finishes and eight more seasons that ended in the GISA state semifinals.

With 14 returning starting split equally between offense and defense, the Hornets opened the 2014 season as favorites to repeat, especially with several successful Class AAA programs becoming members of the Georgia High School Association.

“Any given week, an opponent can fall,” Hanson said. “Whether you’re an underdog, whether you’re a big dog, whatever. The biggest thing is we’ve got to come out, stay together as a team like we have the last two weeks, focus on the fundamentals and details and let the rest take care of itself.”

The Lions, though, are more than familiar with Westfield’s recent success. The first meeting between schools during the first round of the 2012 state playoffs ended with the Hornets holding on for a 10-7 win at home before being eliminated the following week by The Heritage School.

The two programs met again in last year’s first round, with Westfield winning 42-13. The Hornets, who went on to defeat Southland Academy 27-24 and Stratford Academy 34-31 averaged 32.8 points per game in 2013.

Juniors Ryan Fitzpatrick (6-1, 190) and Giles Amos (6-3, 200) return at quarterback and as the Hornets’ top receiver, respectively, in a hybrid of the wing-T based on motion and misdirection.

The bulk of last year’s starters on the offensive line also return including seniors Camron Washington (5-11, 330) at center, Khory Holliday (5-11, 230) at guard and Dehmal Amrit (6-3, 310) at tackle. Fullback Josh Jenkins (5-7, 150) also is back.

“It’s a familiar opponent. Coach Jones does a great job. They’ve been running this offense and defense for years,” Hanson said. When you want to see where you’re at, this is a good team to do that.”

Turnovers have been a constant in each of Trinity Christian’s first two losses this year. Last week at Flint River, the Lions didn’t have much of a chance to settle into hos- tile surroundings after the Wildcats converted three miscues into 21 early points en route to a 35-6 loss.



More Sports

High School Baseball

Cougars fall at Northside

Newnan followed up a late victory over Chapel Hill with an early morning trip to Columbus, and the results Saturday saw a sluggish Cougars t ... Read More


High School Baseball

Johnson sharp as Cougars shake off rust in win

Newnan may have needed three innings to shake off the rust in Friday’s 6-2 road win over Chapel Hill following a six-day layoff. But j ... Read More


Vikings rout Dutchtown; Indians fall to Starr’s Mill

Northgate improved its record to 2-2 Friday with a 12-1 victory over Dutchtown on the road Friday in McDonough in a game called after six in ... Read More


High School Spring Sports

Northgate drops tennis openers to Starr’s Mill

After having matches rained out twice earlier this week, Northgate tennis teams finally got their season under way Thursday, losing to tough ... Read More


GISA state basketball

Hawks, Lions bow out in first round

Heritage School and Trinity Christian boys teams had respective 2014-15 basketball seasons come to an end in the opening round of the GISA C ... Read More

High School Soccer

EC gets back on field in split with Houston Co.

Mother Nature hasn’t been a best friend to East Coweta soccer teams so far this season. Despite starting the year nearly three weeks a ... Read More