Truckee suffers first loss of season
Truckee’s injuries and weak second half performances finally caught up with them in Durham where they lost 39 – 27, giving up 25 second-half points and scoring none of their own.
“We should have whipped that team because I know we’re better than them,” senior quarterback Kevin Schlesinger said.
But when at least nine players are injured, a few more are sick and the healthy players are playing on both sides of the ball, it’s tough to play four full quarters.
“We’re just missing some key guys and it’s hurting,” coach Bob Shaffer said. “We have to shuffle people around and find some places to play people.”
Truckee was ahead 27 to 14 at halftime, lead by Schlesinger behind the offensive line. He had more than 90 yards rushing in the first half. Wide receiver RJ Ballou had a huge half with two touchdown receptions, one catch for 56 yards and the second for 61 yards, finishing the game with 4 total catches with 173 yards. Ballou also had his first touchdown of the season last week against Dayton.
“Everything fell into place,” he said. “I didn’t have a touchdown last year, I hadn’t had one since my sophomore year.”
Junior running back Mike Hackley had a rushing touchdown along with Schlesinger, but the second half was a different story.
“I think we get so far ahead at half time that we just think that we have the game,” Schlesinger said.
In the second half, Durham took to the air, scoring four touchdowns all on passes.
“I don’t think they even ran the ball in the second half,” Schlesinger said.
It was also the half when the injuries began to take their toll. Several players were hurt in the game itself. Senior guard Rafa Herrera pulled both groin muscles. Senior wide receiver and defensive back Jacob Bohart has a possible fracture in his right foot. Sophomore running back Tom Hill has a high ankle sprain. Senior wide receiver and defensive back Matt Scholz has a bruised knee muscle. Senior tackle and defensive end James Decoite has a shoulder injury. And junior wide receiver and outside linebacker Shane Wright has a bruised kidney.
Several players were hampered by the flu throughout the previous week. Injuries prevented some key players from even suiting up.
Senior running back Nick Smith is having problems with a hip. Sophomore receiver and defensive back Jamie Maehler is still out with a knee injury, but is expected to be back for part-time action within the next two weeks. Senior defensive end Travis Kramer might be back next week from a shoulder injury sustained before the season began.
Schlesinger finished the game with 127 rushing yards on 13 carries and went 12 of 27 with 265 passing yards with two touchdown passes, two interceptions and a rushing touchdown. Senior running back James Ward had 48 yards on 12 carries and Hackley had 43 yards on seven carries.
Quarterback Kevin Schlesinger rushed for 127 yards on 13 carries, the most for the team, while going 12 for 27 with 265 yards with two touchdowns and two interceptions. RJ Ballou had a big game with 173 receiving yards with just four catches and two touchdowns.
A loss may stem the tide.
“It’s a good learning experience,” said junior defensive back and receiver JR Murphy.
Flashbacks of last year’s sole loss may wake them up a little.
“We lost to Fernley last year and we decided to not lose again,” Schlesinger said.
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