Tigers pounce on Vikings in 21-14 alumni weekend win

Halftime adjustments led second-half shutout by the Trinity defense

The Tiger’s undefeated streak continued last Saturday as Trinity University bested Berry College 21-14 in a close game that saw both teams pushed to their limits in the afternoon sun. Throughout the game, the Trinity football team demonstrated a continued will to win. Head coach Jerheme Urban shared his satisfaction with the team’s next-man-up attitude.

“First and foremost, I think it’s a full team win. We told everyone last night that it’s going to take everyone, and we had a lot of guys step up. We had to shuffle some people around because of some injuries a couple of weeks ago, and we had some of those players get hurt today which meant that the next wave of guys had to step up,” Urban said.

This mentality of the team helping others “step up” is reflected among the players who all felt like the team had their backs, including Caleb Crawford, senior wide receiver.

“It feels awesome to be able to contribute to a big team win, but I can’t do it without the rest of my teammates so I’m just thankful for everyone around me and I’m thankful to be here,” Crawford said.

Ryan Merrifield, Crawford’s teammate and fellow senior wide receiver, shared the sentiment.

“It feels good to know that all the work we put in as a team is coming to fruition,” Merrifield said. He finished with 114 yards and a touchdown on five receptions.

Though spirits were high after the game, the team was also aware of several problems that arose during the game against a very skilled enemy team.

“We need to improve on the ability to score more often, there were too many opportunities that we left out there where we could have built up a pretty good lead against Berry, and we just have to grow up on that aspect to put teams away,” said Wade Lytal, assistant coach and offensive coordinator.

Paul Michalak, Lytal’s colleague and assistant coach as well as the team’s defensive coordinator, felt similarly about the defense.

“Come out in the first half ready to go is something that we want to work on, because if you look at the second half we really didn’t make that many adjustments schematically. We just played better, as the guys were ready to go in the second half,” Michalak said.

This is also seen among the players, including senior linebacker Caleb Harmel.

“We just need to put it together, I think everyone knows that. We just have to continue getting better, we have great athletes, great guys on this team. But just having that one combined effort needs to be improved on, I think,” Harmel said.

The team was unanimous in their drive to be better; however, the team was also unanimous in their love for the support from their classmates, parents and alumni in the stands who cheered on the Tigers throughout the game. Senior quarterback Tucker Horn showed his appreciation to those who showed up at the game.

“Thanks to everyone for coming out. We definitely heard them, we felt their presence. It’s great that we have all the alumni come back, we love them and this program wouldn’t have been what it was without them coming back and supporting us,” Horn said.

With high spirits and an eye for improvement, the Trinity football team looks forward to continuing their undefeated season and heading into the playoffs strong. Their next game is this Saturday at Centre College in Danville, Kentucky, while their next home game is on Nov. 12 against Sewanee University of the South.