Troup defeats LaGrange for fifth-straight time to set up potential region championship showdown with Carver

The Troup Tigers beat the LaGrange Grangers on Saturday night 14-7 in a low scoring defensive battle in what marked the first region matchup between the two rivals since 2015. These two teams were originally scheduled to play each other on Friday night, but in a tragic accident Thursday night that resulted in a LaGrange player passing away led to the game being pushed back to Saturday while the community grieved the news. According to Troup Head Coach Tanner Glisson, the player had some cousins that play for Troup, and the mere four-miles that separate the two schools made it an emotional night for both programs.  Coach Glisson spoke about how both sidelines played with heavy hearts and gave a lot of prayers before the game to acknowledge a fallen teammate and member of the community.

Once the game kicked off, the running game and defensive battle proved to be the key to victory. Some people suspected the game was going to be more of an offensive shootout featuring, but instead this game turned out to be the complete opposite—with Troup controlling both time of possession and the pace of the game. Coach Glisson commented on why he felt the game went in this direction that fans or even media didn’t expect.

“We wanted to control the game with the running attack and we were able to be successful giving us the best chance to win.” said Glisson. “We tried to run the ball early to control the game and were were able to do that we ran the ball 60 times for 382 yards total. On their side, they wanted to be more balanced with their run and pass yards.”

The Tigers ran the ball consistently throughout the game and accounted for 355 yards, while tallying just 27 yards in the passing game. Glisson stated that they only threw the ball twice in the whole game because the rushing attack was working so well. The Tigers were able to control the line of scrimmage on both sides of the ball, which led to this incredible performance on the ground by freshman quarterback Taeo Todd and running backs Anthony Ferguson, AJ Tucker, and Navontae Moss who all eclipsed 60 yards rushing. Glisson spoke about his thoughts on the success the Tigers had running the ball against a talented LaGrange defense.

“I felt we were a better in the trenches, which allowed our guys to be more active running the ball and we had three of our guys rush for over 60 yards,” said Glisson. “Our freshman Quarterback Taeo Todd rushed for over 150 yards and he is a strong runner. We used time of possession to help give us more opportunities to run the ball consistently to work to our advantage.”

The Tigers also displayed an excellent performance defensively, holding the Grangers to just 28 rushing yards all game. The Grangers passed for 139 yards looking to open up the offensive playbook, but it still wasn’t enough to overcome the Tigers’ defense who held them scoreless up until the third quarter. On the other hand, the Grangers defense couldn’t seem to stop the run all night and it forced them to play catch up for most of the game. Each team did cause a turnover, but it seemed to benefit the Tigers more than the Grangers. Coach Glisson was proud of the defense and talked about how important it is that their chemistry keeps improving.

“We were actually disappointed that they scored, because we were trying to shut them out,” said Glisson. “They hit on a pass play for 70 yards where it was a one-on-one matchup and their kid made a play and they ended up scoring later on that drive. Defensively, I thought our guys played very well on how they stopped the run and we’re getting some guys back, so as those guys start to gel together they’ll only get better. That will be huge for us going forward as we have the region championship on Saturday against [No. 3 ranked] Carver-Columbus.”

With the victory, the Tigers have defeated the Grangers five times in a row—making them the only team in Troup history to accomplish this. The Tigers are now 5-3 this year with a 5-1 region record and five-game winning streak. The Grangers fall to 6-3, but are poised to make the playoffs and are in the midst of the program’s most successful season since 2009. The Grangers will now look to play the Hardaway Hawks this Thursday and the Tigers will prepare to play two games in two days as they face the Jordan Red Jackets on Tuesday and the Carver Tigers in the region championship on Saturday.

If the Tigers defeat Jordan on Tuesday, they will attempt to win their third region title since 1987.


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