Troy football tops Dunbar in final scrimmage


TROY — Troy football coach Dan Gress had just finished talking to his team after a scrimmage win over Dunbar Friday night at Troy Memorial Stadium.

Troy won the varsity scrimmage 21-12 and the JV — playing against mostly varsity players from Dunbar — outscored them two touchdown to one in a quarter.

“It’s C-J week now,” Gress said about the season opener next Friday at Chaminade-Julienne. “It is about Chaminade-Julienne now and starting the season 1-0.”

With some injured players in the backfield, sophomore Jahari Ward stepped up behind a young offensive line and had a big night against the Dunbar defense.

Ward finished with 11 carries for 86 yards.

“Troy football is about pounding the rock,” Gress said. “It just shows the pride Jahari (Ward) takes, to come out there and run the ball like that. And I can’t say enough about our offensive line with four new starters. The work they have put in all summer. The way they come in an play with a chip on their shoulders.”

On Troy’s second drive, Ward had runs of 11, 11 and 12 yards before bulling his way into the end zone from one-yard out to make it 7-0.

On the defensive side, Troy limited Dunbar to 11 yards rushing on seven carries, but the Wolverines speed presented problems in the passing game.

Dunbar was 10 of 19 for 161 yards and two touchdowns and two interceptions. The Wolverines also had a 73-yard TD pass called back on a holding penalty.

“It was great to see our young defensive line in action and out athletes run to the ball (against the running game),” Gress said. “We knew Dunbar’s outside speed was one of the biggest challenges we were going to face.”

After Dunbar closed to 7-6 on a 20-yard touchdown pass, it was Troy’s defensive making a big play on Dunbar’s next possession.

Senior defensive back Christian Block stepped in front of a pass at the Dunbar 35 and took it to the end zone. Helman’s kick made it 14-6.

After a 41-yard TD pass got Dunbar within 14-12, Troy used its passing game for the final score.

Josh Mayfield finished three of seven for 36 yards on the night.

But, after Troy took over at Dunbar’s 21 after a three-yard punt, the Trojans faced fourth-and-two from the 13.

Mayfield found William Wolke in the left corner of the end zone and Helman’s PAT kick made it 21-12. Junior Gavin Burris ended the half for Troy with an interception.

“It just a matter of execution,” Gress said. “Making the throw, making the catch. It is all about executing and we did it on that pass play. I think this was (a good scrimmage to prepare for C-J).”

And the preparation to go 1-0 has already started.

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