Bulldogs jump out to early lead, overcome midgame struggles to outlast Putnam County 42-20

The Trenton Bulldogs improved their record to 4-0 overall and 2-0 in the Grand River Conference with a 42-20 victory over the Putnam County Midgets on Friday night at Dave Mitchell Field in Unionville.

Trenton started the game in the same fashion they had done in three previous contests, opening the scoring in the first quarter, as senior quarterback Coleman Griffin burst through a hole in the defensive line and outraced the Midgets backline to the goal line on a 43 yard run, with Tom Johnson providing the play-by-play call on KTTN FM 92.3: 



The Bulldogs continued to dominate the early portion in the Battle of Unbeatens, adding seven more points to the lead, as a Griffin four yard run and second PAT from Sam Gibson gave Trenton a 14-0 lead.

That edge ballooned to 26-0 in the second quarter, on a 3 yard scoring run by Gibson and a quarterback sneak by Griffin, with neither PAT attempt, one on a kick, and the other on a run attempt, proving successful.  The Midgets found offensive success, and began to shift momentum late in the second quarter, with a 27 yard scoring strike from Trace Riediger to Vincent Jones, leaving the halftime score at 26-6.

Putnam County’s surge saw the Midgets defense hold Trenton the first series of the second half, and the Midget offense went to hurry-up mode, a strategy that weakened Trenton’s normally stout defense for the rest of the quarter.

A 1 yard touchdown run by Blaine Perkins cut the THS lead to 26-12 with 7:11 remaining in the third quarter, with more adversity hitting the Bulldogs on the game’s next drive, as Griffin was injured on a short run, bringing sophomore Mason Rongey into the game.  Putnam County forced a 3rd-and-long and pressured Rongey, who managed to escape and fire a deep pass into the hands of Tucker Otto, extending the drive as Griffin soon returned to the game.  Gibson finished the dramatic drive with a one-yard plunge, with a two-point pass to Gabe Novak giving Trenton a 34-12 lead.  However, the Bulldogs difficulties against the hurry-up strategy lingered, with a quick drive of 57 seconds finished on an 18 yard strike from Riediger to Jones, with a two-point run by Chase Tomlin cutting the lead to 34-20 through three quarters.

Trenton’s defense showed improvement in the final quarter, as the Bulldogs bent, but held the Midgets away from a score that would have cut the lead in half.  Midway through the quarter, Trenton pinned Putnam County at the five yard line, and forced a turnover on a Rongey interception, setting up a short, game-clinching drive finished off by a 6 yard Gibson touchdown run: 



Trenton, having survived the road test at Unionville, will return home for the program’s only home game in a five week stretch, hosting the Milan Wildcats on Friday night for Homecoming (7:00 PM on KTTN FM 92.3).  Putnam County will be Princeton’s Homecoming opponent on Friday night from Eddie Allen Field, also set for a 7 o’clock kick.

Other final scores from Friday, September 16, 2022: 

Gallatin 46, Polo 8 

Milan 34, Princeton 14

Maysville 27, South Harrison 6

North Platte 25, Penney 24

West Platte 48, Plattsburg 0 

East Buchanan 33, Lathrop 7 

Mid-Buchanan 35, Lawson 0

St. Pius X 34, Maryville 27 

Chillicothe 42, Cameron 0

Savannah 69, Lafayette 0 

Benton 63, KC Central 0

Centralia 48, Brookfield 8 

Monroe City 46, South Shelby 8

Clark County 50, Highland 8

Macon 49, Palmyra 14

Hogan Prep 26, Marceline 0 (Saturday) 

Harrisburg 36, Paris 0

Salisbury 48, Scotland County 7

Fayette 21, Westran 18

Russellville 35, Carrollton 14

Higginsville 74, Summit Christian Academy 6

Richmond 18, Van Horn 7

Holden 30, Butler 22

Knob Noster 48, KC Northeast 12

Lexington 18, KC Southeast 6


King City 92, Pattonsburg 36 (Saturday) 

North Andrew 13, Northland Christian 0 (FORFEIT by NC) 

Bishop LeBlond 66, St. Joseph Christian 12

Albany 36, Worth County 34

Stanberry 72, Knox County 38

East Atchison 72, DeKalb 0

Mound City 68, Southwest Livingston 44

Platte Valley 46, South Holt / Nodaway-Holt 6

Stewartsville / Osborn 70, Keytesville 30

Rock Port 58, Nodaway Valley 18 

Orrick 96, Braymer 80

Santa Fe 38, Norborne / Hardin-Central 26

North Shelby 74, Schuyler County 30