By TOMMY BRYAN
HARTSVILLE -- Small mistakes get magnified in big games.
The occasional blown blocking assignment, a pair of false starts, coupled with a handful of missed tackles helped Trousdale County run past Friendship Christian 28-14 Friday, Nov. 20 in a Class 2A quarterfinal game at John Kerr Field.
Trousdale County improved to 11-1 on the season and advances to a TSSAA semifinal contest Nov. 27 at home against McKenzie -- a 46-20 winner over Adamsville.
Friendship Christian finished the season 10-2 with both losses coming at the hands of Trousdale County -- in Hartsville.
"I thought we had some opportunites," said FCS head coach John McNeal. "Even more than out first game over there. We played better in all phases of the game, but you just can’t make mistakes against a team like Trousdale County. You need some breaks along the way. They fumbled three times and all three bounced right back to them."
The Yellow Jackets got on the board first when quarterback Craig Brown faked the fullback left, then darted off right guard for 51 yards down to the FCS three.
Burly fullback Tacola Seay banged in for the first of his three scores for a 6-0 TCHS lead with 3:07 to go in the first period after the PAT attempt sailed wide left.
Friendship answered early in the second quarter as quarterback Lee Maasen scrambled and found a sliding John Markham in the endzone for a 35-yard TD pass and a brief 7-6 lead after Michael Self’s booming PAT.
Trousdale County scored on back-to-back possessions to close out the first half as Tyler Edwards rambled 50 yards around end to the FCS 10 yard line.
Joey Cox scored scored on a short run, followed by Seay for the two-pointer to give the ‘Jackets a 14-7 lead at the 8:57 mark of the second period.
A third down completion for 35 yards from QB Dillon Young to tightend Alex Gregory got Trousdale County out of a hole and set up a 46 yard touchdown run by Seay with 1:29 to go before intermission and a 21-7 lead at halftime.
TCHS took a 28-8 lead with a 46 yard run by Seay early in the fourth quarter.
FCS came back with a 38 yard pass from Maasen to Markham at the 11:29 mark of the fourth period.
Maasen completed 9-of-16 passes for 148 yards with two touchdown passes to Markham. Markham ran 13 times for 62 yards.
"This was a very athletic group of seniors," McNeal said. "I want to say they went 20-4 over their last two seasons here. They’ll have a lot of great memories as they leave."