Class 3A state title game glance: Red-hot Trinity Christian aims for 8th crown

Trinity Christian players face off during a playoff practice. The Conquerors face Chaminade-Madonna in the Class 3A state championship game on Wednesday at 7 p.m.
Trinity Christian players face off during a playoff practice. The Conquerors face Chaminade-Madonna in the Class 3A state championship game on Wednesday at 7 p.m. (News4Jax)

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Three high school football teams from the area reached this week’s state championship games, Bolles, Trinity Christian and University Christian. We look at those games and give you what you need to know if you plan on attending it or watching it online.

Class 3A state championship glance

Trinity Christian (11-1) vs. Hollywood Chaminade-Madonna (8-1)

When: Wednesday, 7 p.m.

Where: Doak Campbell Stadium, Tallahassee

Tickets: $15 in advance; $18 on gameday. No on-site sales of tickets. All must be purchased online. Those can be found here. Parking is included in the ticket price.

Watch it: The game will be streamed through Spectrum Cable. Cost is $9.99. That link can be found here. The game is not televised locally.

The playoff road

Trinity Christian d. Baldwin, 20-3; d. Episcopal, 35-0; d. Tallahassee Florida High, 45-14; d. Ocala Trinity Catholic, 56-33; Chaminade-Madonna d. Somerset Academy, 52-0; d. Calvary Christian, 38-6; d. Edison, 28-0; d. Berkeley Prep, 23-21.

Glance at the game

A rematch of the 2016 state championship game, won 24-13 by the Conquerors. That was the last of their four consecutive state titles, a feat accomplished by just one other area team (Suwannee, 1987-90). With 7 state titles, all of them since 2002, Trinity coach Verlon Dorminey is tied for second in area history and trails only Bolles icon Corky Rogers (10). Dorminey is tied with former University Christian and Union County coach Robby Pruitt for second-most titles. Pruitt won 4 at UC and then 3 straight at Union. …

Did anyone see the Trinity march to Tallahassee coming? The Conquerors lost their opener by 24 and then squeezed by Columbia in their second game. Since that start, Trinity has been on another level. They’ve won 11 straight games. The defense has held 8 opponents to a touchdown or less. That number includes 3 shutouts. Just how dominant has the defense been? Trinity Catholic’s 33 points in the state semifinals were more than the Conquerors had allowed in their previous 7 games combined (29). That win over Trinity Catholic atoned for a loss in the first-round state playoff game last year, a defeat that handed the Conquerors their worst finish in nearly 30 years. LB Lucius Lattimore (78 tackles) and Caden Morrell (67 tackles) pace the Trinity defense. DE Johnathan Goddard Jr. leads the team in sacks with 7. S Corey Coley and CB Terrell Jackson lead the team in interceptions with 3 apiece.

While much of Trinity’s success is attributed to the defensive muscle, the Conquerors have steadily improved offensively, due in large part to the growth of the younger players and the occasional breakout game of a veteran. RB Kaleb Killian took a headlining role in the state semifinals with a career game. He logged career highs in carries (17), yardage (180) and TDs (5). Underclassmen have delivered time and again for Trinity, from RB Darnell Rogers’ steady performances (337 rushing yards, 6 TDs), to Christian Ellis’ spot start and 140-yard, 2-TD game against Baldwin, the younger players have stepped up when they’ve been asked to. RB Treyaun Webb (837 rushing yards, 12 TDs) is Trinity’s main workhorse and is within sight of a 1,000-yard season. QB Jacory Jordan has gotten more confident with the return of WR Marcus Burke to the lineup. He’s 38 of 51 over his last 3 playoff games (666 yards, 5 TDs, INT) and completing 75% of his passes. That’s a significant improvement from his performance in his first 8 games (57 for 129, 44% completion). ...

Chaminade QB Jaylon Tolbert has passed for 1,179 yards and 10 TDs and has yet to throw an interception. Freshman RB Davion Gause has rushed for 762 yards and leads the team with 6 TDs. The Lions are built on defense, allowing just an average 10.6 ppg.

Coach speak

“You know that’s disappointing for us at Trinity, you know, to know that you get put out in the first round and you’re 5-6 in the first losing season in 27 years. That’s a hard pill to swallow around here. You know, so for us to be able to get back to this game is exciting and it’s something these kids have worked really, really hard to do.” — Verlon Dorminey.

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