Written by Corbett Smith
Series of mistakes in closing seconds doom Trinity in 27-23 loss to Jenks
SOUTHLAKE — Sporting Polynesian-style decals on their helmets honoring two teammates — Gaius Vaenuku and Polo Manukainiu — who died in a July car crash, Euless Trinity took the field for the first time in the 2013 season.
It ended the game looking like a team shaking off some pre-season rust.
Christian Hammack’s fourth-down completion to Isaac Ellsworth fell 10 yards short, and Trinity’s final drive sputtered in the shadow of the goal line, as Oklahoma power Jenks held on for a 27-23 win at Dragon Stadium.
A diving interception by Dany Mulanga — his second of the game — gave Trinity a last-minute chance to grab a win, putting the ball across midfield with less than two minutes remaining.
Hammack completed passes to Homer Babcock and Will Taylor, moving the ball to the Jenks 22-yard line with 1:21 to play. But a series of mistakes in the closing seconds gave Trinity little more than a desperate fourth-down attempt, with false start and delay of game penalties, an incompletion and a near sack leading up to Trinity’s final play.
Jenks, Oklahoma’s defending Class 6A champions, rallied from a 10-point deficit in the third quarter, with sophomore quarterback Cooper Nunley throwing two of his three touchdown passes in the period.
Nunley’s 2-yard pass to tight end Ty Yeates gave Jenks the lead for the first time in the second half.
Trinity (0-1) took a 23-13 lead with 5:48 remaining in the third quarter on a 75-yard touchdown run by Ellsworth, his second long TD run of the game.
Ellsworth finished with 138 yards on just eight carries.
Trinity sophomore running back Ja’Ron Wilson rushed for 106 yards and a touchdown.
Follow Corbett Smith on Twitter at @corbettsmithDMN