Trojans fall to Smoky Valley


It was a situation where one good team cashed in on its opportunities and another good team didn’t. Smoky Valley, led by the running and passing of quarterback Brad Bengston, defeated the Trojans 14-8 Friday night at Reimer Field.

The Vikings scored first on a 17-yard pass from Bengston to Jason Johnson with 3:51 left inthe first quarter. The PAT was no good and Smoky led 6-0.

Late in the first quarter, after stopping Smoky on fourth down, Hillsboro started a drive on its own 23 and drove all the way down to the Smoky Valley 2-yard line. But Coates’s fourth-down pass in the end zone was incomplete, and the Trojans lost an opportunity to take the lead.

After the two teams exchanged possessions, the Vikings drove from their own 41-yard line with less than a minute to play in the half and scored on a 21-yard Bengston run to go up 12-0. He also added a 2-point conversion to make it 14-0 at intermission.

In the second half, the Trojan defense stopped the Vikings on key plays, including Wade Sorenson’s recovery of Bengston fumble on the Hillsboro 5-yard line. But the offense simply could not sustain a drive for a score. Dan Funk finally put Hillsboro on the board with an 87-yard punt return for a touchdown with 2:21 left in the game. Ross Duerksen caught a Coates pass for the 2-point conversion to make it 14-8. The Trojans got the ball back once more with 48 seconds left, but Jason Johnson intercepted a Coates pass to end the Trojans’ hopes of a comeback.

The loss drops Hillsboro to 2-1, but they remain 2-0 in the Mid Division.

Jeremy Loewen had 100 rushing yards to lead Hillsboro. Coates threw for 90 yards on 7-17 with one interception.

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