TRM to take on Wildcats for second time this season
Just like their second round playoff game last year, the T.R. Miller Tigers find themselves matched up with a team from their region who they have already faced off against this season.
The Tigers will tangle with the Trinity Wildcats this Friday in round two with a return trip to Montgomery.
T.R. Miller lost to Trinity earlier in the year on the road 34-27. Last year, T.R. Miller defeated Luverne in the regular season at home before losing to them in the second round at home.
T.R. Miller comes into the game this week against Trinity with an 8-3 record after taking down No. 1 seed from region 2 Daleville on the road last Friday night 41-24.
T.R. Miller Tiger head coach Jamie Riggs said the Tigers’ game against Daleville Friday was a wild game.
“We have played some wild games this year and that game is included with those,” Riggs said. “I believe we had more turnovers in that game than we had all year. Daleville had a slew of them too though. I learned along time ago that when you have a game where you turn the ball over a lot or don’t play very well or whatever happens, but you still find a way to win, especially in a playoff game, so that is very good. So, I was really pleased with our ability to just get the win over there.”
Riggs said his offensive was able to finish the game off late to help seal the win.
“We got some things good at the end when we needed too,” Riggs said. “I was pleased with that and I was pleased with our defense making some good plays that we have not seen in awhile. We put them in third-and-long, which helped. We do need to do a better job with the kickoffs so hopefully we will be better at that, kicking and covering.”
As for this week, Trinity comes into the second game with T.R. Miller with a 10-1 record.
In the first meeting, with the game tied 20-20 at the end of the third quarter, the then No. 9 Trinity Wildcats outscored No. 10 T.R. Miller 14-7 in the fourth quarter to claim a 34-27 win at Boykin Field. The loss for the Tigers dropped them to 5-3 overall this season and 4-2 in region play.
The Tigers racked up 395 total yards of offense in the loss with 257 rushing and 138 passing. The Tigers had 173 yards rushing in the first half and 79 passing but was held to 84 rushing in the second half and 59 passing.
Trinity totaled 452 total yards of offense, totaling 211 rushing and 241 passing. The Wildcats had 72 yards rushing in the first half and 176 passing while accumulating 139 rushing and 65 passing in the second half.
Riggs said after the earlier loss the bottom line was that Trinity made more plays in the second half than his team did and that his Tigers couldn’t seem to get off the field on third downs and didn’t make any third down conversions on offense and ended up having to punt the ball a few times.
“It was a close game the first game,” Riggs said. “Normally when you play someone a second time, things are different. This one will be different in some aspects, but we can’t tell the future. When you have played someone as close together as this as it has only been about three weeks, I am sure they will look at the last game as we will and we will both make some changes. Then you line up and go play. Sooner or later, the players just have to make the plays.”
This will be the 17th regular season to playoff rematch for T.R. Miller with the last coming last year against Luverne.
T.R. Miller is 12-4 in rematches going 9-0 in games won in the regular season and in the playoffs, 3-0 in games lost in the regular season and won in the playoffs, 0-1 in games won in the regular season and lost in the playoffs and 0-3 in games lost in both matches.
Riggs said preparing and playing a team twice in one season sometimes it is easier to prepare.
“You have some knowledge of what they do,” Riggs said. “Other times, it is harder to prepare because if you did something that worked well, they are going to counter that. It is always interesting to see how all that plays out. They know our good players, we know their good players. We know the things they do well and they know the things we do well. We both know each other’s weaknesses, so you know each other well.”
One strength for Trinity is their spread offense’s passing game and screen passes.
“That is what they do,” Riggs said. “So, we will see that. We worked on that last time and will work on that this time. We will try and do a better job at that, but they are really good at what they do. Most good teams are good at something. They are good at screens and getting the ball to No. 21, Mark White. You have to understand that.”
Riggs said the tough part is Trinity does a lot of other things well. “We have to defend all that as well,” Riggs said. “They make it challenging for you.”
Game time is set for 7 p.m. in Montgomery.