By Garth Shanklin
Loveland High School hosted Military Appreciation Night against Glen Este on Saturday, Oct. 15. It seems fitting, since the Tigers spent majority of the first quarter shelling the Trojans.
Loveland scored 27 points in the first 12 minutes, jumping ahead to a lead they would not surrender.
Cameron Beck returned the opening kickoff 92 yards for a touchdown to start the game. Six minutes later, Luke Waddell broke free for an 85-yard run.
Glen Este was unable to move the ball throughout the first quarter, leading to Loveland’s third touchdown, an 18-yard run by Zion Winn.
After the Trojans got the ball back on offense, they promptly threw an interception, and on the very next play, Loveland connected on a 41-yard touchdown pass for their fourth score of the quarter.
Glen Este Head Coach Nick Ayers said the team’s poor start is not something they can afford to have given the amount of youth on the squad.
“We didn’t start well,” Ayers said. “We knew coming in with young guys, 10 sophomores starting, you have to start fast to create that belief. With two explosive guys like Zion Winn and Luke Waddell, you have to corner them and take them down and be sound tacklers. We were not sound tacklers tonight.”
After Waddell added another touchdown run to increase the Tiger lead to 34-0, Glen Este answered with a one-yard touchdown run by Aaron Johnston. The Trojans trailed 34-7 at halftime.
Johnston added a four-yard run in the third quarter and a one-yard run in the fourth, accounting for all three of Glen Este’s scores.
For the game, the senior tallied 18 carries for 124 yards and those three touchdowns. Waddell totaled 176 yards and three scores on just eight carries for Loveland. Nick Hinton led the Trojans with five receptions for 78 yards, while Jacob Clements caught three passes for 81 yards and a touchdown for Loveland.
Ayers said the team needs to continue to get better and mature, and the fact that the squad did not give up helps them do just that.
“Our young guys have to grow,” Ayers said. “Our offense is getting better each week. If our defense tackles, that game is closer. We’re in ballgames till the end. There’s no quit, our kids came out and responded after half but it can’t get like that. It can’t take us getting on them in the halftime for them to respond. We have to grow up, grow as players, grow as coaches, grow as a family and get after it.”
The team’s growth not withstanding, Ayers said the squad need to continue to make plays if they want to win games.
“We still have to execute,” Ayers said. “We had some guys catch the ball in traffic better this week, but overall we have to tackle better, we have to coach better, we have to play better. It is what it is. In this league, it’s not going to come easy. If you want easy, you probably shouldn’t play in this league. We’ll continue to grow and we’ll get better and we’ll get ready for Turpin.”
The Trojans trip to Turpin results in a game that will begin at 7 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 21.