St. Xavier Xcited for Trinity rematch
By: Steve Ludden
Not many teams want to draw the No. 1 nationally ranked Trinity Shamrocks this playoff season. St. Xavier may be one the few teams to be excited about the opportunity. After the first meeting, St. Xavier coach Mike Glaser had a smile and a sense of optimism to him. “I want to play them (Trinity) in the regional final. That’s my goal, I want to play them again, they’re good,” Glaser said.
He may have good reason, too. Few people gave the Tigers a fighting chance against the talent-rich Shamrocks. Anyone who watched the first half of the first game saw an inspired St. X squad that more than held their own against Trinity. “Can’t wait to play them again,” an emphatic Glaser said after the first meeting. “I would love to play them again tomorrow and try to correct the mistakes we made.”
The Tigers could have easily had the lead at halftime if not for a missed field goal, a goal line fumble and a missed extra point. Instead, they trailed Trinity 14-6 at the break. As a matter of fact, the Tigers outgained the Rocks 247 yards to 220 yards at the break. They maintained drives going five of eight on third down in the first half with the shortest drive still managing to go 57 yards, keeping the explosive Trinity offense sitting harmlessly on the sideline.
The problem was that St. Xavier bogged down nearing the red zone and didn’t capitalize the scoring chances the Tigers had.
The second half was a different story, the Tigers came out flat with the first four drives going three and out and only gaining 11 yards. The Shamrocks, however, got their offense on track scoring touchdowns on their first four possessions to coming out of the break.
“I really like this football team, the only thing I’m disappointed in was not playing the whole 48 minutes,” Glaser said then.
Earlier this year Coach Glaser knew he had an inexperienced team that had potential. After a blowout win against a undermanned Fern Creek team, St. X played a now nationally ranked Riverdale (Tn.) team close. While the team was down, he was upbeat.
“It’s going to be November before we are a real good football team,” Glaser said.
Since the Trinity loss, the Tigers are better and are unbeaten including a 7-3 win against Cincinnati St. Xavier, the only team to stay within 10 points to the Rocks in a 17-7 loss.
After playing this season in the huge shadow cast by Trinity, St. X has a chance to earn respect and steal the holy grail from it’s rival. Whether or not they can accomplish this mission or not, I expect that Trinity will know that it got everything St. X had to offer.