Prep FB

Fountain-Fort Cason junior Tai Faavae carries the ball in the second quarter Friday against Mesa Ridge at CA Foster Stadium.

There's only been one matchup between Fountain-Fort Carson and Mesa Ridge. 

Friday night was the first meeting between the two, and will likely be the last due to future classification differences. But, for one night, the two cross-town schools met, with the Trojans pulling out a 7-0 win on the road to move to 5-1. 

Leading the way for the visitors was junior Tai Faavae, or, as coach Jake Novotny calls him, the heart and soul of the Trojans. 

The long, puffed hair of Faavae makes him impossible to miss. He's also around the ball, whether on offense or defense, nearly every play. 

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"He's a special player," Novotny said. "He's the leader of our team. I think now that he's starting to embrace that, it's rubbing off on the team." 

Through almost three quarters, the Trojan offense had moved the field plenty from their side of the field to the Mesa Ridge red zone. Once they arrived, the roll stopped. 

Junior quarterback Rusten Liana tossed four interceptions in the win, despite entering the game without one. 

Two of those four came with his offense in the red zone. Another came in the end zone on a deep heave before halftime. 

Each time, the defense came through, led by Faavae from his inside-backer spot. He was part of a group of Trojans who swarmed the ball on every Mesa Ridge play. 

As much as things went awry on offense, the defense hardly missed a beat. 

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"The game plan was to shut down their wide receivers and make sure our defensive line could make plays," Faavae said. "I give props to our linemen for getting pressure. Our defensive backs shut down the pass, too." 

It was the second shutout of the year for the Trojans. 

With 5:37 left in the third quarter, in the red zone once again, Fountain-Fort Carson finally struck. 

From the one-yard-line, senior Dezmen Oliver plunged into the end zone, just a play after he converted a fourth-and-5. The score was his 10th of the year -- a stat made more impactful by the fact that the Trojans had a win this year due to forfeit, negating any possible stats from the contest. 

"I was just happy to put my team up on the scoreboard," Oliver said. "I wanted to help out our line. They were working their tails off, so it was only right to finally get in." 

Oliver and Faavae have formed a proverbial two-headed monster. The latter brings more power, while the former has more quickness. 

"Every day, we try to get better," Faavae said. "We want to make sure our linemen get their props, because they never get as much as they deserve. (Dezmen) doesn't get those touchdowns without our linemen pancaking people." 

"Facts," Oliver added. 

Up next for the Trojans is Fruita Monument. Both No. 1 Palmer Ridge and No.2 Pine Creek lost Friday, evening their respective records with that of the Trojans.