WARSAW — Nobody could’ve planned how Friday’s game started, but River View sure wasn’t complaining about starting it’s opening drive on the Tuscarawas Valley 42-yard line.
The Trojans’ attempted onside kick backfired, as the ball never went the required 10 yards, giving the Black Bears the ball in good position.
“I was excited, I was like, ‘Hey this is great field position, we can make something happen on this,'” Zack Carroll, who ran for 110 yards and a touchdown said.
But the Black Bears failed to make anything happen after failing on a fourth down attempt.
“We should’ve capitalized and we didn’t,” coach Bob Forgrave said.
“I mean we just have to excute better on offense. I can do better, we all can do better,” Carroll said.
After that drive, the Trojans started at their own on the 36 and capped it off with a 41-yard touchdown run by full back Seth Johnson, who ran right through the Black Bear defense.
“Guys need to give more effort. We just have to get better,” Carroll said.
The Black Bears came back with a drive of their own.
Starting at their own 27-yard line, the Black Bears ran the ball seven times, out of eight plays, moving into Trojan territory, but right as they were gaining momentum, they fumbled the hand off.
The Trojans would capitalize, scoring on a 63-yard touchdown run the next play.
From then on it was all Trojans, as the Black Bear defense had no answer for what they were doing.
But even when trailing 33-0 at halftime, Forgrave said he never thought they couldn’t come back.
“There is never a point where I don’t think we can because I’ve done it before with teams, but I’m not playing and until those guys believe in themselves and what they are doing and execute it isn’t going to happen. That’s the bottom line,” Forgrave said.
The second half was better for the Black Bears, as they were able to put some stops together and held the Trojans scoreless in the third quarter.
In the fourth quarter, the Black Bears got on the board after a 39-yard touchdown run by Carroll.
“That touchdown really meant nothing, that was against their junior varsity,” Carroll said. “It was nice to get points on the board.”
The Black Bears will now have a week to improve before facing county foe Ridgewood (1-1) on Friday.
But, Forgrave said it’s not about practice.
“We improve in practice, we do, we just don’t carry it over yet, but eventually it will click,” Forgrave said.
But, until Friday, practice is all that the Black Bears have to get better on the field.
“You have to stay positive, you have to motivate them. You have to light a fire under them, but it shouldn’t be that way. You shouldn’t have to light a fire in them on Fridays. You have to do that yourself at some point,” Carroll said about what it will take to keep the team upbeat.
“We will rise from this,” Forgrave said.