Justin Chapman | Echo
Taylor football ended up on the wrong side of a lopsided victory. The Trojans traveled to Indianapolis Saturday to face No. 13 Marian. The final scored ended up at 56-14.
The Trojans were no match for the Knights. Marian's offense overpowered Taylor's defense, racking up 578 total yards on 65 offensive plays, eleven fewer plays than Taylor ran. Marian also averaged 8.9 yards gained per play.
However, redshirt junior quarterback Everett Pollard was a bright spot for the Trojans. Pollard converted 22 passes out of 40 attempts for 221 yards. He also threw two touchdowns, which put him as Taylor's all-time career leader in touchdown passes.
"I didn't even know during the game, and I had no idea," said Pollard. "The loss was the main thing on my mind. But, anytime you look at a body of work like that it just made me think of all the people who have caught those passes and how special that is to me. So I thought more about over time that journey of coming to that number."
According to Pollard, the team struggles to start games well from the get-go. For instance, the offense struggles to get first downs early in the game, leading to the team being in a lull period. They then find themselves in a hole, and then start to play well, but sometimes the deficit is too much to overcome.
During most games, the Trojans find a way to get the score close enough where they give themselves a chance to win. For example, when Taylor lost to Butler, they faced a 10-point deficit in the second quarter, yet later on, they were ahead by one point in the fourth quarter.
"(Marian is) a sound football team," said Pollard. "I'd say they're probably one of the best, if not, the best coached team that we play on a regular basis. You have to outplay them, they're not gonna give you anything. So it's hard to be in a deficit to them, and it's hard to get in long yardage situations. You have to come with a mindset that 'I'm gonna outplay them today,' not 'stumble upon touchdowns.'"
As Taylor looks to their next game against Lindenwood, they expect to win. Too often the Trojans try to feel out their opponent, rather than coming out strong and believing they can play well.
Additionally, head coach Ron Korfmacher wants the team to emphasize the basics to start the game. Just make the first throw, the first catch, the first block and take the game one thing at a time. He wants the team to have the same mindset as well if they find themselves behind.
"Every week, no matter what the outcome, opponent, score, whatever, we're always going to return and work the fundamentals," said Korfmacher. "Get better at blocking, tackling, throwing it, catching it, kicking it. Those are the primary things; we're not going to veer from that."
Hopefully the Trojans can get back on track and start strong against Lindenwood to create a cushion early in the game. The game against Marian is the only time the Trojans failed to score in the first quarter.
On defense, the team looks to be more consistent. They know they can make big plays and make important stops, but the issue is doing that on a regular basis.
Junior defensive back Tyler Gerig said the defense's biggest struggle is being consistent. One drive the defense will force the opposing team into a three-and-out, and then the next drive the defense will give up a big play.
The Trojans will face Lindenwood at home tomorrow. Kickoff is set for 1 p.m.
"Photograph by Brad Timmerman"