With a strongminded defense, balanced offense and well-measured respect for each of the Class AAAA giants they defeated along their path, the 2017 Blessed Trinity Titans topped previously undefeated Marist 16-7 Friday night and completed an unforgettable journey to capture the program’s first-ever state title.
Here’s some perspective to what this program has now accomplished in just two seasons since being bumped up to Class AAAA.
In the second round of this year’s playoffs the Titans snapped two-time defending state champion Cartersville’s 41 game winning streak (21-17). Thomson was a 43-13 casualty in the quarterfinals. They avenged their only 2016 loss to another Class AAAA opponent by beating Mary Persons 28-7 in this year’s semifinals and then they took care of this year's 25-24 loss to Marist (Blessed Trinity's only loss within the classification this year) by redressing it with this year’s 16-7 championship victory. Let’s not forget that this impressive playoff run came entirely on the road after a 35-0 first-round win over No. 3 seed Oconee County.
Blessed Trinity is now the team to beat in Class AAAA, but we should treat this as an exciting moment for more than just the Titans. It’s exciting for Marist, who has a strong cast returning next year and will have a region showdown with the defending champs underscoring their revitalized agenda. This is exciting for teams all across the classification that saw first-hand what can transpire once a well-prepared defense discovers its swagger in the playoffs. The offenses Blessed Trinity shut down along the route to its title couldn’t have been more different from each other and that is a credit to the coaches and players not only communicating well, but being on the same page throughout the week. Take a lesson players and young coaches and keep studying those game plans.
Lastly, it’s just exciting to see that a core of guys playing together together since youth football found their fluency at the right time and used that bond on the field to get the job done. That’s a legacy that future Titans will now get to grow up in.
Losing to Marist WAS the best thing to happen to Blessed Trinity this season, but only because Blessed Trinity made it the best thing to happen to Blessed Trinity. We should all be excited for how much this BT and Marist’s rivalry has grown in just three all-time meetings between the schools. A Blessed Trinity program that saw its championship slip away in an overtime heartbreaker in 2015 to Westminster, got its confidence after making noise as a young squad in a new classification in 2016 and then just stole the show in 2017 to bring home the hardware. Anything is possible.
So congrats to the 2017 champs and all the teams for a great season for the classification and the state of Georgia. I'll be back with my takeaways of the 2017 season in this week's blog. In the meantime, here is Chip Saye's outstanding recap of the last stop of Blessed Trinity's road to redemption Blessed Trinity 16, Marist 7.