For the first time in Taylor football’s history, the Trojans defeated Butler in a 17-14 win last Saturday. Taylor now sits at 1-1 overall in their season.
The win against the Bulldogs, a NCAA D-I FCS team, took place at Butler in Indianapolis. Keys to winning the game for the Trojans included rushing the ball for 257 yards on 48 carries and committing zero turnovers.
“It was honestly a lot of joy and a lot of relief because this is the first time in history, or since a lot of the seniors have even been here, that we’ve won a game we weren’t supposed to win,” junior quarterback Zac Saltzgaber said.
Senior running back Spencer Crisp gave the Trojans their first touchdown on Taylor’s opening drive with a five-yard run. The second touchdown came early in the second quarter on an eight-yard pass from Saltzgaber to junior wide receiver Trey Burdine to make the score 14-0.
After those two touchdowns, sophomore kicker Garrett Russell kicked a field goal in the third quarter. The Trojan defense held off the Butler offense from there to protect the lead.
Although the Trojan offense ran the ball well, the defense did its job by keeping Butler to 71 yards rushing and 261 yards total.
While head coach Ron Korfmacher wished the defense created a turnover or two, he’s pleased with the way Saltzgaber took care of the football whether he was passing or running.
Saltzgaber finished the night with 89 yards passing, going 10-16 and one touchdown. He also ran the ball 13 times, gaining 93 yards.
“I think overall our run game is going to be a huge part of being able to produce this whole year,” Saltzgaber said.
Korfmacher wants the offense to be more balanced moving forward. However, he said since running the ball against Butler proved to be successful, he wanted to keep attacking on the ground until Butler found an answer.
Korfmacher also said the wide receivers did their part in blocking to create a successful run game.
Redshirt junior linebacker Mark Baker finished the game with four solo tackles and two assisted tackles. Senior linebacker TJ Swore added three solo tackles, one assisted tackle and a sack for nine yards.
“I think it was a big team win, overall,” Baker said. “We came in, had a great game plan. Really thankful for our coaches putting in a lot of hard work to prepare us so we knew what was coming. Butler has a good offense, but having that preparation beforehand helped a lot.”
The Trojans will compete in their first home game of the season tomorrow after two games on the road. They face Missouri Baptist, with kickoff set for 1 p.m.