Written by SportsDayDFW.com
Trinity imposes its will, breaking halftime tie to secure rematch with Carroll
ARLINGTON — Euless Trinity’s 42-21 victory over Mansfield Timberview was deceivingly close. Tied late in the third quarter, the Trinity wear-down factor finally took over with 21 points in the final 13 minutes, with a final possession ending on the Timberview 1-yard line as time expired.
Trinity (10-2) advanced to play Southlake Carroll (11-1) in the Class 5A Division I regional semifinal at 4 p.m. Friday. Carroll ousted Trinity, 16-7, in the same round last season.
The usually steamroller-like Trinity offense was stuck in a 14-14 halftime tie with a hard-hitting, physical Timberview.
“I told our players at halftime, I knew what was wrong,” Trinity coach Steve Lineweaver said. “You think you should be up by five touchdowns. Well, ‘Welcome to the playoffs.’”
After an offsides penalty against Timberview set up a third-and-5, Trinity pounced with a 20-yard pass to 5-5 senior receiver Edrick Gonzales to the Timberview 38. Sophomore running back Ja’Ron Wilson ran 28 yards on the next play to the 11. Senior quarterback Christian Hammack pushed in a 2-yard quarterback sneak for Trinity’s 28-21 lead with 54 seconds left in the third quarter and the avalanche started. Trinity scored on its next two possessions.
Timberview’s defense, led by LSU commit defensive back Ed Paris and sophomore linebacker Craig Jim-Lawson, had helped slow down Trinity’s usually potent combination of speedy runners behind a massive offensive line.
“We had the size advantage, we typically do, and we just kept pounding away,” Lineweaver said. “They were as tough physically as anyone we’ve played but they weren’t as deep and just felt we’d wear them down.”
Trinity used some well-disguised secondaries to disrupt Timberview’s offense, which threw two interceptions. But Trinity’s last two drives each went for more than 90 yards. Trinity went 96-yards on 10 plays in one and 93 yards in two plays on the other.
Using more than four minutes in the fourth quarter, Trinity took a 35-21 lead as Wilson broke open a 33-yard scoring run by balancing down the left sideline for the final yards. Senior running back Isaac Ellsworth made it a 21-point lead with a 93-yard run in the next series. Trinity ended with 386 yards rushing to set up a rematch with neighboring Carroll where Lineweaver was once an assistant and his son Aaron is a former Carroll star athlete and current assistant.
“I know the communities are all excited about that,” Trinity’s Lineweaver said. “But we want to take 12 hours and enjoy this one before thinking about that one. If you don’t celebrate with the players I really don’t think you’ll be as sharp the next week. And we just beat a very good team. What are you doing it for if you don’t enjoy it some.”