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Three times was not the charm that the Washington County Commanders (4-7, 3-3) had hoped it would be this past Friday night.
With a 43-0 loss, the Commanders had their season ended in the first round of the KHSAA Class 2A Playoffs for the third straight year by the Glasgow Scotties (10-1).
WC struggled on both sides of the ball but had the most trouble stopping Glasgow’s rushing attack. Junior running back Marquez Trigg came into the contest with 1,283 rushing yards and 19 touchdowns on the season.
He continued finding holes against the Commanders, plugging away on the ground for 167 yards and four touchdowns on 21 carries.
Quarterback Ryan Hinkley also found huge gaps in the WC defense, running for 47 yards on only four carries.
Hinkley, who has only thrown an interception in one game this season, also continued navigating an efficient air attack. While attempting only eight passes, he was able to throw for 125 yards and a touchdown on six completions.
On offense, senior quarterback Tylyn Byas served as the team’s biggest spark plug, but the entire Commander offense was held without a score.
Byas ran for 79 yards on 18 carries and threw for 24 yards on 5-of-13 passing, although two of his passes were dropped in the end zone.
Senior Marcus Wright led the team in receiving yards for the second straight game, hauling in three passes for 20 yards.
For Head Coach Eric Sagrecy, the loss came down to a lack of execution rather than not being tough enough.
“They outplayed us from an execution standpoint,” Sagrecy said. “They didn’t outphysical us or anything like that. But when you’re playing a team like Glasgow, a team of that caliber, the whole team has to take the preparation for the game seriously.”
Despite how the season ended, though, Sagrecy believes that the team had a successful year as a whole, especially with the team’s 2-9 record last season.
But he’s not content with where the team’s currently at, either.
“As a competitive person, four wins is not what I’m looking for from this team,” Sagrecy said. “It’s a good start, but it’s something that we need to build on from here on out. Hopefully we can keep going in the right direction.”
The team graduates 14 seniors but returns a strong rising senior group next season, according to Sagrecy. But with only two rising juniors currently on the squad, next year’s sophomores will be a crucial part of the team’s success.
“Those younger kids are going to be asked to do a lot next season,” Sagrecy said. “I think they’ll be ready to step up. They’ll definitely be getting some good experience in the process.”
But, regardless of what happens in the future, this year’s squad will hold a special place in Sagrecy’s heart.
“This class was extremely resilient, very tough-minded,” Sagrecy said. “This group of guys were one of my favorite classes ever. It’s been an awesome ride.”