MOSCOW Prairie's bid to upend Troy began with a brilliant offensive and defensive sequence and included a couple of magic moments near the end of the contest, but the Pirates' bag of big plays did not include a way to grind the Trojan ground game to a halt, which carried Friday night's contest 42-36.
PHS forced Troy quarterback Cody Self into an awkward turnover on the game's opening possession, and the PHS offense followed with a seven-play series that saw Pirates signalman Jake Bruner convert a fourth down with one short run and score the game's first points with another.
Then the Pirates forced a three-and-out and drove into the Troy red zone before turning the ball over on an interception. Troy knotted the game at 8-8 on a toss sweep to Zach Bafus early in the second quarter, then went ahead 14-8 on a long bomb from Self to Kellen Hoskins. Prairie countered with a bomb from Bruner to Rhett Schlader, which, combined with successful conversions, put PHS ahead 16-14 3:28 before halftime.
The half ended with Self scrambling on one of his trademark scrambles -- a wing-dang-do in his backfield, during which he evaded Casey Danly with help from a big block, but wound up running right back into Danly, who had jumped up and put himself in prime position.
The third quarter began with the Pirates vaulting ahead, 24-14, on a run by Calvin Hinkelman -- but the period turned into a disaster for Prairie after Bafus housed a run off tackle almost untouched for 57 yards on Troy's first play of the second half. The Trojans pulled ahead 28-24 on another scoring pass to Hoskins, then ramped the edge to 10 with another Bafus run. Prairie got one score back with a perfect play call, on which Schlader delivered a screen pass to Hunter McWilliams, who with help from Dakota Wilson went 72 yards down the Troy sideline for a touchdown.
The Trojans tacked on a Hoskins run late in the fourth quarter -- vital insurance, it turned out. Prairie again closed within a touchdown on a run by Isaiah Shears, then recovered an onsided kick when a Pirate sniffed out the loose ball in a pile of Troy players who failed to corral it. But Troy stymied the Pirates' last good opportunity and bled out most of the clock before pinning Prairie deep with an excellent punt.
For more details, check out the Idaho County Free Press on Nov. 20.
Troy 42, Prairie 36
Friday, Nov. 15 at Moscow, Kibbie Dome
Pirates 8 8 14 6 - 36
Trojans 0 14 20 8 - 42
P - Jake Bruner 2-yd run (Hunter McWilliams pass from Bruner)
T - Zach Bafus 2-yd run (Bafus run)
T - Kellen Hoskins 70-yd pass from Cody Self (kick blocked)
P - Rhett Schlader 60-yd pass from Jake Bruner (Isaiah Shears pass from Bruner)
P - Calvin Hinkelman 1-yd run (Lucas Arnzen run)
T - Bafus 57-yd run (run failed)
T - Hoskins 20-yd pass from Self (Bafus run)
T - Bafus 5-yd run (run failed)
P - McWilliams 72-yd pass from Schlader (pass failed)
T - Hoskins 12-yd run (Self run)
P - Isaiah Shears 5-yd run (pass failed)