Scoring early and often and playing only the first half the Columbus Unified High School Titan varsity football team wrapped up the 4A-7 district title with a 3-0 record defeating the Girard Trojans 53-28 at home Thursday night.
The Titans improved to 7-2 overall.with the win and advance to the first round of state playoffs hosting Coffeyville Tuesday at 7 p.m. in a rematch of a game played earlier this season won by Coffeyville 41-40.
The Titans scored all 53 of their points in the first half while holding Girard scoreless. The Titan junior varsity played the second half allowing all of the Trojan points.
The Titans had scored their first two touchdowns after only 64 seconds of the game had expired. The first score came on a 14-yard run by senior running back Lewis Kellogg with only 55 seconds gone in the first quarter. The extra point conversion kick was good by junior place kicker Taylor Spear. Following an onside kickoff recovered by the Titans at the Trojan 41-yard line the Titans scored on their first play from scrimmage on a 41-yard pass from senior quarterback Damion Tinnin to Spear. The extra point conversion kick by Spear was wide left leaving the Titans with an early 13-0 lead.
On their third possession the Titans scored on a 17-yard run by Kellogg followed by an extra point conversion kick by Spear for a 20-0 lead with 6:26 remaining in the first quarter.
On their fourth possession the Titans scored on a 14-yard pass from Tinnin to senior wide receiver Dale Benedict. The extra point conversion kick by Spear was good giving the Titans a 27-0 lead with 2:32 remaining in the first quarter.
The fifth Titan score of the first quarter came on an 80-yard punt return by Benedict with 10.5 seconds remaining in the quarter. Spear added the extra point conversion kick and the Titans led 34-0 as the first quarter ended.
On their next possession the Titans scored on a 25-yard pass from Tinnin to Kellogg. Spear made the extra point conversion kick for a 41-0 Titan lead with 9:47 remaining in the first half.
On their next possession the Titans scored on a 26-yard run by Benedict. The extra point conversion kick by Spear was wide left leaving the score 47-0 with 5:16 remaining in the half.
The Titans scored on their final possession of the half on a 3-yard run by Benedict with 40.8 seconds remaining. The extra point conversion kick by Spear was wide right for a 53-0 halftime lead.
The Titan varsity players did not play in the second half allowing Girard to score 28 unanswered points.
Both quarterback Tinnin and running back Kellogg set milestone records in the game. Tinnin set a new career passing record with 4,012 yards to better the old mark set by Kerry Sachetta in the late 1970’s with 3,944 while Kellogg became the tenth player to score 20 touchdowns in a season in the SEK League.
“I’m so proud of all the kids and coaches,” said head coach Dan Grundy. “We went through two losses early but stayed together. We believe in what we are doing and stuck with it.”
“The kids continue to improve, said Grundy. “At this point we are just looking to keep winning and progressing forward. We are happy to be the 2009 District 7 champs and to win it as a team.”
“Tuesday we must be physical against Coffeyville,” said Grundy. “They gained some yards passing in the previous game but we must stop their run game first. Anyway you look at it, we are going to enjoy the Girard win first.”
Score by quarters:
Girard 00 00 13 15 — 28
Col. 34 19 00 00 — 53