TRAVERSE CITY — Although he worried about it earlier, Finn Durbin arrived in plenty of time for his second victory of the day Saturday.
Durbin kicked four extra points and a 38-yard field goal to help Traverse City West defeat Alpena 37-6 at Thirlby Field in a 7 p.m. football contest, not all that long after playing an entire soccer game in Midland as his Titan defense shut out the Chemics 3-0.
The soccer game started at noon on Midland’s artificial turf football field. Then Durbin caught the team bus back to Traverse City, where his parents had his football bag ready to go for another bus trip from West Senior High to Thirlby’s turf.
“I figured I would maybe make kickoff,” Durbin said. “I was pleasantly surprised.”
Saturday marked the only date Durbin’s two sports would conflict with each other this fall, aside from playoff possibilities down the road, so he had those games marked on his calendar.
“I was (looking forward to it) and also kind of dreading it,” Durbin said. “I was worried I’d be tired from the soccer game, but it didn’t work out that way.”
The junior rested on the bus trip home after playing all 80 minutes at defensive center back on the pitch.
Mason Morrison threw for 138 yards and a touchdown to Josh Tanis and Aiden Griggs had 119 total yards, two rushing touchdowns and a pick-six on defense in the Titans’ Big North Conference win over the Wildcats (2-3, 2-1 BNC), who had won two straight but still haven’t officially ever beaten West on the football field (Alpena’s 1999 win was later wiped out as a forfeit). Tanis hauled in 81 yards of receptions.
Morrison, making his second start at quarterback in place of injured Andy Soma, completed eight of 14 passes as West rebounded from a 32-0 loss to TC Central a week earlier.
“Any kid having to step into the Patriot Game as his first varsity game (at QB), that would be daunting,” Titans head coach Greg Vaughan said. “He did a great job leading us.”
Chase Tyson added 40 rushing yards as the workload was spread out. Christian Boivin added 36, Remi SChultz 26 and Seth Gallagher 21.
Durbin’s field goal put West up 23-0 in the first quarter.
Defensively, the Titans (3-2, 1-1 BNC) were paced by Boivin’s eight tackles, three of which resulted in losses. Michael Schermerhorn added five (one for loss), Carson Whipple, Connor Crowfoot, Griggs and Gallagher each had four and Dylan Teeples, Jake Patanella and Foster Snell posted three piece. Noah Lambertson had a sack and Tanis recovered a fumble. Gallagher forced two fumbles and had one tackle for loss and Griggs recovered a fumble.
Griggs continued to provide big plays all over the field, with over 100 total yards, three total TDs, an interception and a fumble recovery.
“He’s been a force on special teams, defense and offense,” Vaughan said. “We try to get him in space and let him be Aiden Griggs.”
West hosts Flint Carman-Ainsworth (1-4) on Friday. The Cavaliers are coming off a 22-6 win over Saginaw Arthur Hill after scoring a combined six points in their first four games.