Addison Trail falls despite Reed's big game
The wins may have yet to come, but Addison Trail senior Eric Reed is doing everything in his power to make the most of his senior season of football this spring.
The Blazers' two-way star shined again Friday night on offense and defense and even used a big kickoff run late to keep his team's hopes alive before eventually falling 21-14 at Leyden in a battle of teams that came into action at 0-3. Reed rushed for 126 yards and a touchdown, caught four passes for another 117 yards and made tackle after tackle near the line of scrimmage.
Despite his all-out effort, Reed plans to continue working to improve after the host Eagles prevailed Friday and kept Addison Trail in search of its first victory.
"It was just little mistakes. We put our defense in bad positions and gave the other team opportunities to score," Reed said after four turnovers hurt the Blazers. "That's just something we've got to fix, and if that didn't happen I think we easily would have won this game. But there's always next week."
Reed, who gained 28 yards on his first carry, capped the Blazers' opening drive with an 8-yard run for a quick 6-0 lead. Leyden, however took a 14-6 lead at the half after a touchdown run from Jacob DeJesus and an 18-yard touchdown pass from Leo Latiker to Elijah Diblich. After a scoreless third quarter the hosts took a 21-6 lead in the fourth quarter before a 44-yard kick return by Reed set the stage for a 19-yard Sami Renc score on a quarterback keeper with 2:10 left to play.
The Eagles recovered the onside kick, picked up one first down and ran out the clock.
"I'm proud of how we played," said Reed, who had 21 touches on offense for 243 yards to go along with double-digit tackles. "Unfortunately it was just the little things that made us lose. I'm always proud of the way I play but I do think of all the mess-ups I had. I look to build off that and use that to motivate me for next week."
With contests left against Hinsdale South and Morton, Reed and the Blazers plan to go all out for two more weeks.
"We have a short season, and we got two more weeks," he said. "I'm a senior, I'm never going to be playing football for the rest of my life and I just want to make the best of it."
Addison Trail coach Chris Bazant has enjoyed watching Reed progress in his final season.
"He's a stud and he works hard," the Blazers coach said. "He's one of our [top] guys on defense and one of our [top] guys on offense. He just brings up the guys around. He keeps continuing to get better and he's carrying his teammates, which is good."