Trinity looking for improvement in 1st halfAfter back-to-back losses punctuated by poor first halves, Dickinson Trinity head football coach Randy Gordon said it’s time for his team to go on the attack instead of having to react.
By: Dustin Monke, The Dickinson Press
After back-to-back losses punctuated by poor first halves, Dickinson Trinity head football coach Randy Gordon said it’s time for his team to go on the attack instead of having to react.
“We can’t sit on our heels. We’ve got to be on the attack mode and we’ve got to get on it right away,” Gordon said. “We can’t wait for a half to decide to play.”
The past two games have been unsettling for the Titans in a way that they aren’t used to.
Trinity was outscored 74-14 in the first halves of Class 2A, West Region losses against Minot Ryan (50-13) and Rugby (45-33).
The Titans (2-3, 1-2 West) trailed at halftime in each of their three losses. In a 28-6 loss to Valley City on Aug. 31, they fell behind 20-6 after two quarters.
Trinity has a short week to get over those losses and fix what needs to be fixed. They face Bismarck St. Mary’s (2-3, 1-2 West) in a West Region game at 6 p.m. MDT today at the Bismarck Community Bowl.
Trinity senior lineman Alex Nielsen offered an interesting take on the team’s first-half struggles.
“You can’t throw wet wood on the fire and expect it to burn right away,” Nielsen said.
In a way, it’s a great analogy for the Titans’ first-half issues.
Gordon said in last Friday’s game against Rugby, the Titans were playing stagnant after the opening kickoff and it cost them.
They had just 96 yards — all but 35 of which came on its only scoring series — and a touchdown on 21 plays in the first half against Rugby, including turnovers on downs on their first three possessions. They scored four touchdowns and gained 203 yards on 27 plays in the second half.
Trinity’s defense gave up touchdowns on all six of Rugby’s first-half possessions, responding only once with a nine-play, 61-yard touchdown drive.
“We don’t want to go out there and just test things right away,” Gordon said. “We want to go out there and do something and accomplish something.”
Only once this season has Trinity led at halftime, its 32-0 season-opening win over Killdeer. It was tied 6-6 with Carrington at halftime of a game it went on to win 25-24 in overtime.
Trinity showed what it was capable of in the second half against Rugby, outscoring the Panthers 26-7 and turning up the heat defensively.
Tonight is pivotal to Trinity’s playoff hopes, Gordon said.
A loss tonight would all but force Trinity to win the rest of its games to ensure it earns a spot in the Class 2A playoffs. After a road trip to Turtle Mountain on Oct. 5 and a home game against Bottineau on Oct. 11, the Titans close out the regular season Oct. 16 against Beulah, which is undefeated and currently ranked No. 2 in Class 2A.
“We need a win now. We’re more hungry for one,” Trinity senior receiver and defensive back Alex Binstock said. “We have to get rid of our slow starts. We can’t be having bad first halves anymore.”