"Roy, Cougs rumble past Troy"
June 11, 2008 · Updated 4:33 PM
"It's true that Central Kitsap senior Eric Roy ran for 267 yards against Olympic Thursday night. It's true he scored four touchdowns. But it isn't true that Roy was the Trojans' worst enemy in the annual Battle of Bucklin Hill football game at Silverdale Stadium. Oly reserved that role for itself. After clutching a 7-0 first-quarter lead, the Trojans began a slow fizzle just before halftime, committing four turnovers and allowing Roy and the Cougs to run past them for a 25-15 victory.Roy got the Cougars - who capped an all-day Homecoming celebration with Thursday's victory - into passing gear with the first of his touchdowns, an 87-yard sprint down the left sideline on the Cougs' first play of the second half.He later scored on runs of 27, 12 and 27 yards - the final TD giving the Cougars some breathing room after Oly pulled within 18-15 with 5 minutes, 23 seconds left to play.I told the guys at halftime, we can coach the schemes, but it's up to them to go do it, said CK coach Mark Keel, whose team leveled its season record at 4-4 (4-3 Narrows League Bridge Division) with the win. We went out in the third quarter and took care of business.Keel said he felt the Cougs got off to a flat start after a day of Homecoming hoop-dee-doo.It's a hard day. We talked about it all week, Keel said. You want them to have fun, but as a coach it scares you to see them, going crazy at the pep assembly, wasting all that adrenaline.Roy, who got his 267 yards on 22 carries, agreed that the Homecoming celebration was a double-edged sword for the Cougs, but gave credit to the Trojans for keeping the ball out of the hands of himself and his offensive cohorts.They had a lot of ball control, said Roy. We only had four possessions in the first half, and that's not like us.We were flat in the first half, and then three guys stepped up in the second, he added - listing seniors Mike Kluge, Kevin Cronin and Justin Thayer - and everybody else just sort of fell in behind.The Cougars also got some help from an Olympic team that executed its offense to near perfection in the first half, then executed itself in the second. After Roy's first touchdown, CK's third-quarter scoring drives were 58 yards (following a Trojan fumble) and 32 yards (after Derrick Rutledge grabbed the second of the Cougs' three interceptions of Oly junior Will Gratz).We're a young team, that's been getting younger every week, said Pete Weymiller, the Trojans' first-year coach. But I've got to give our young guys credit. They fought; they never quit. I'm really proud of that.Weymiller did say experience was a huge factor against the senior-laden Cougs. Referring to a pregame CK tradition of having senior players present their parents with flowers, he grinned, I don't know how many roses they gave out tonight. It was an awful lot.The Trojans (2-4, 2-5) did their best to make Thursday's renewal the typical tooth-and-nail battle the two teams have been putting on for years. After stopping CK on its first possession, Oly drove 83 yards in eight plays, going the final 43 on a screen pass from Gratz to sophomore Jarrel Nelson, who scooted in untouched for a 7-0 lead.Though the Cougars moved the ball well - they had six first downs, all on the ground, prior to the halftime Homecoming extravaganza - they had no points to show for it at the intermission.We just weren't doing our jobs. We were missing assignments, said Roy. Then everything finally started clicking.Because they missed their conversion attempt (they missed their first three, in fact), the Cougs didn't take the lead until Roy's second TD, with 4:11 left in the third quarter.After taking an 18-7 lead, CK stopped the Trojans once on downs, but couldn't stop them on their next drive, another eight-play job fueled by Gratz passes of 11 yards to Ariel Sanches and 8 to Jarrel Nelson. When Steve Dillon plowed over from 1 yard out and Shawn Perry added a two-point conversion, Troy's deficit was a paltry three points.Trapped deep in its own territory after forcing a Cougar punt, Oly needed 11 yards on fourth down to keep the ball, but Gratz's connection with Nelson netted only 10. Roy, juking his way past one defender on the way, scored on the next play, and Scott Lebas picked off Gratz's next attempt to seal the deal.They moved the ball well on us, Keel said of the Trojans, who had (unofficially) identical totals of 142 yards in both passing and rushing offense. But we made them work (on their drives), and took a lot of time off the clock. "