COMSTOCK PARK — Traverse City West fell behind 14-0 early in the first quarter, battled back to within one point early in the second half, but could not over the hump as the Titans suffered a 24-16 loss on the road to Comstock Park.
“We missed a big opportunity tonight,” said West coach Tim Wooer.
Comstock Park knocked West in the mouth at the outset of Friday’s game, scoring two quick touchdowns to take a 14-point lead. The Titans (4-2) got on the board on a 34-yard field goal by Zach Gloshen, but Comstock Park bumped the margin back to 14, 17-3 with a field goal of its own.
West got a bit of momentum before the half when it marched 80 yards for a score, culminating with a Max Ludka 3-yard run, followed by Gloshen’s PAT, to go into the break down 17-10. The Titans then took the opening drive of the second half, moved down the field again, and punched in a touchdown on a 1-yard run from Grant Ellison. West set up to kick the extra point, but after a Comstock Park penalty moved the ball inside the 2-yard line, the Titans elected to go for two and their first lead of the game and couldn’t make the conversion.
The Titans’ last chance came on a 4th-and-3 at the Comstock Park 35, but they couldn’t convert on that key play, either. The Panthers then scored an insurance touchdown with 1:07 left to seal the victory.
“I’m proud of how we came back down 14-0 in the first quarter,” said Wooer. “That was tough. We had numerous opportunities to win the football game, but we just didn’t win.”
Grant Balino led West with 96 yards rushing on 19 carries. Defensively, Jordan Stevenson had an interception and Keegan Kenny made nine tackles.
West will try to bounce back when it travels to Cadillac with the Big North Conference title on the line next Friday.