Football searches for their first win against LC bird since 1986


Photo by: Midlo Trojan Football Twitter

Midlothian Trojans Football making history with their first playoff win in school history.

Under the leadership of varsity head coach Matt Hutchings, the Midlothian Trojans  look for another dominant performance as they play against LC Bird. However, the Skyhawks enter tonight’s contest undefeated on the season and undefeated against the Trojans since 1987.

The Midlo Varsity Football in 1986 had a record of 8-3 regionally under the leadership of Head Coach Jon Ianucci. Because of that, the Trojans had their most successful season since 1968 with victories against the Monacan Chiefs and Manchester Lancers for the Dominion District Championship.   They defeated the Skyhawks 19-18 in a game former assistant coach Pat Manuel called their “toughest game of the year.”

Brandon Bonser ’87 played lineman on the ’86 team was part of a core group of players that led to the team’s success that season according to Manuel.

“Beating arch rival Monacan was the season highlight, especially since we were friends with all of those guys,” Brandon Bonser said.

The Trojans had an outstanding coaching staff with student athletes that were committed to winning at the highest level during the 1986 season.

“LC Bird was the team to beat that season, and our win against them pretty much guaranteed our trip to the playoffs,” Bonser said. 

“The main reason that the Trojans haven’t accomplished the goal of beating LC Bird for the past three decades is primarily because of the fact that the team after 1986 season lost central component to their team. After the loss of their team captains, the Trojans haven’t match up particularly well with LC Bird since. The talent that was present on the 1986 team was something that the Trojans have been attempting to replicate for decades in an attempt to not only be the Skyhawks, but to beat every team in the region successfully.

“We had lots of great individual talent during the ’86 season with player like Lin Anderson, Cliff Armstead, Micheal Reaves, Chris Holt, and Herbie Renn. We had a fantastic coaching staff, every one of whom remain atop my list of greatest mentors to this day. However, we played with purpose. Every single one of us wanted to dominate all the time,” Bonser said.

There are similiarities between the 1986 roster and the 2022 roster.

“There’s no one superstar that gets the attention, there are multiple players on our roster that contribute to winning” current Head Coach Matt Hutchings.

Midlo’s roster in 1986 wasn’t reliant on one superstar who commanded attention, it consisted of multiple players that consistently performed while having depth. An example of this is when their starting quarterback Jack Nelms suffered an injury in the 1986 season, while adequately replaced him with Kerr as he took over the position.

The Trojans currently have players such as Chase Chambers who are properly managing the game while making decisions that are conducive to the teams confidence.

“Our team played very well in the first two games and defensively we haven’t given up a point. In both games we have been fairly balanced with our offense with multiple players leading our defense. We are playing with the confidence that is needed when you play a tough team like LC Bird,” Hutchings  said.

Friday night’s game marks the team’s first real test in their quest for a state championship run.

With LC Bird being the first team that’s comparable to Midlo, the group has been “practicing great” and “really focused and excited” about this game according to Hutchings.

“The ’86 team were two touchdowns away from going undefeated that year. It was a special team in Midlothian Football History. We know about the school’s history but we also want to create our own path. This is a new team that doesn’t control what happened in the past, only what happens today,” Hutchings said.