03.05.2009 klo 12:18
The Young Trojans (our 20 to 21-year-old men) played against Jyvaskyla Jaguars on the Upper Field the 25th of April. The cold and windy spring had finally made way for some warmth and sunshine, and the first home game this year attracted a decent crowd although the first Maple League home game was still two months away. The Young Trojans, the last season’s National Championship winners, had already played a superb away game beating Vantaa TAFT 28-0.
The Trojan offense relied heavily on RB Ilkka Koiranen’s expert running game throughout the game. There were occasional, very successful keep plays and somewhat less successful pass plays mainly from QB Danny Andersson to WR Ville Vene. The Jaguar defense was seemingly unable to crack the code, and similar successive series of attacks were allowed to gain yardage. The Jaguars were more varied in their offense but still could not penetrate our disciplined defense effectively.
Trojan QB Danny Andersson worked his butt off to get the Jaguars off their butts.
The very first Trojan offense was cut short by an interception 42 yards from our end zone. What followed was a long, steadily advancing Jaguar offensive that reached the 5-yard line. The Trojan defense sacked their quarterback on 4th for the first time. After that, they would not let the Jaguar offense recover but kept them on a tight leash until the end. The Trojans, now with the ball, did not get far before there was another interception. The Jaguars, on the other hand, lost the ball on their 1st to our Ville-Valtteri Suojanen’s interception. Both teams were more careful with long passes after that.
A later drive by the Jaguars ended in a hard-hitting sack by DL Jussi Jalonen. The Jaguars, now with their QB catching a breath outside the sidelines, decided to punt on 3rd. Danny Andersson played a long keep play all across the field to score the first touchdown. A two-point conversion by Ilkka Koiranen; 8-0. The visitors were in disarray and lost their chance to get even. Defensemen such as Mikko Hohkuri and Martti Valimaa pushed the offense back. Finally the Jaguars punted on 3rd for the second time after suffering a sack in their own red zone.
WR Ville Vene appreciates his privacy and is seldom seen in the company of a defender.
Later on in the game Suojanen did some wrestling and stripped the ball right off the hands of a Jaguar receiver near midfield. He proceeded to the end zone and Ilkka Koiranen ran the ball in for a two-pointer. There was an offensive holding call during the conversion, however, and the Trojans had to move back. The following pass play was incomplete and made the conversion no good. 14-0. Neither team could make a significant advance before the halftime.
The 3rd quarter presented the Trojans a very good chance to score again, but they lost ball to a fumble in the opposing red zone. The Jaguars were unable to advance the ball though. Their QB dropped the ball, recovered it, got tackled and fumbled again. The Trojan defense recovered the ball about 9 nine yards from the end zone. All it took was Ilkka Koiranen’s trademarked running play to the end zone and a two-point catch by Ville Vene. 22-0.
DL Jussi Jalonen (#50) hurls his team mate at the quarterback to get the ball loose.
The rest of the game was no less eventful in terms of letting the valuable ball roam free. Sami Toivonen tackled the Jaguars’ kickoff returner forcing a fumble after which Sami Valtonen recovered the ball. Danny Andersson tried to execute one of his keep plays on 1st but lost the ball himself to the Jaguars. The Jaguars, in turn, missed a lateral which got out of bounds right before it was recovered by the Trojans. The following toss play was again disrupted by Sami Valtonen’s tackle; the ball got dislodged and found it’s way to a Trojan defender. Now only 20 yards away from pay dirt, Danny Andersson threw a world-class pass to the right hand side back corner of the Jaguar end zone. Ville Vene was waiting right there and scored a 28-0 TD. There was yet another expected but nonetheless effective sweep-style running play by Ilkka Koiranen; 30-0.
The Jaguars first down after kickoff yielded an amazing 50+ yard TD run, but the PAT was blocked. 30-6. The following kickoff was even more spectacular. The Trojans’ Ilkka Koiranen caught the ball but left it behind and hurried upfield to defend Ville Vene, who picked up the ball and proceeded to score a touchdown. It was no surprise that Ilkka Koiranen scored a two-pointer with a running play, but the way he dodged his way through the defensive ranks was still fun to watch. 38-6.
The jaguars could no longer mount a serious offensive and finally the Trojans scored one more TD in a drive combining excellent running and QB keep plays by Koiranen and Andersson. The final TD pass was caught by Sami Toivonen. A pass play to Ville Vene won the Trojans two more points putting the final figure to 46-6. Due to a victory today the Trojans will face Tampere Saints the next weekend in a home game.
The Trojan defense was incredibly effective today. The Jaguars could only gain 48 yards by passing and a whopping negative 96 yards by running! The Trojans were credited as many as 8 sacks, 4 of which by Martti Valimaa. The Trojans gained 198 rushing yards of which 126 were credited to Ilkka Koiranen. The Trojans advanced the ball 68 yards by passing.
Story: Jussi Hakokari
Photography: Kari Toivonen