Wilson has learned some valuable lessons as the Trojans move closer to their first Portland Interscholastic League football title in seven years.

The Trojans beat Jefferson 28-22 Thursday without standout junior Joe Bozikovich, who was resting a sore shoulder, and learned that they need to keep their focus during the heat of battle, senior lineman Jayson Schmidt says.

'We need to use more technique during games,' he says. 'We can't just rely on our talent to carry us.'

Wilson (6-0, 4-0 PIL) trailed 8-0 in the first quarter, then rolled to a 22-8 lead early in the third period on three touchdown passes by junior Sean Setzer, who finished with 182 yards passing. The Trojans also scored on a 9-yard run by Kacy Fairfax that capped an 80-yard drive in the fourth quarter.

Wilson also gave up more than 300 yards of offense, including 210 yards passing by Jefferson junior TR Smith.

The Trojans will win the PIL's Willamette Division and a spot in the league title game with a victory Friday at winless Madison.

The top two teams in the PIL play host to state playoff games in the first round. Wilson, which figures to be one of those teams, has an offense that can beat a good defense.

'We think we're a pretty good team,' Schmidt says. 'We should go far in the playoffs.'

Jefferson plays host to Lincoln on Friday with a spot in the PIL third-place game at stake. The PIL's third-place team is likely to play at North Medford or South Medford in the first round of the state playoffs.

MORE FOOTBALL: Defending PIL champion Franklin still could reach the PIL title game despite being 2-2, because the Quakers haven't played Marshall yet. The two Columbia Division contenders meet at 1 p.m. Saturday at Marshall. Franklin closes its league schedule next week against Cleveland, while Marshall plays at Wilson.

Jesuit plays host to Glencoe on Friday in a battle for second place in the Metro League. If Jesuit wins, the Crusaders could be headed for a rematch with Central Catholic in the second round of the state playoffs. Hello, PGE Park.

VOLLEYBALL: Jesuit got another shot at defending state champion Gresham on Saturday during the Clearwater Classic in Bend, but this time the Crusaders couldn't pull off a victory.

Jesuit beat Gresham in a single game during the Central Catholic jamboree in September, but the Gophers won in two games Saturday. Jesuit coach Teresa Zimmerlee says the match showed her players some of their potential playoff weaknesses.

'We need to get better on defense,' says Zimmerlee, who guided Jesuit to the state championship match in 1999.

Jesuit is led by seniors Sophia Milo, a middle blocker who is headed to Pepperdine, and Elizabeth Bishop, an outside hitter who will attend Cornell.

Zimmerlee says the new rally scoring should give fans a quick idea of which team will win a game because catching up is much harder.

'You'd better be ready to play when you step on the court,' she says.

SOCCER: Grant plays at Lincoln with the PIL boys title at stake today at 7 p.m., and the Generals still haven't given up a goal in a league game.

Grant is 4-0-1 after a 0-0 tie with Wilson Thursday. Goalkeepers Michael Hillis, a senior, and Creg Chaffin, a sophomore, have split time and helped Grant to a 13-0 scoring edge in the PIL, coach Manolis Tjuanakis says.

The Generals didn't even make the state playoffs last year.

'If we could go from not reaching the playoffs to winning the league title, that would be impressive,' Tjuanakis says.

Contact Cliff Pfenning at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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