Everything considered for Guelph Gryphons receiver Jordan Terrio, having a touchdown called back for a penalty really is neither here nor there.
Terrio was the lone player on either team to get the ball into the end zone in sixth-ranked Guelph’s 9-3 loss to the top-ranked Western Mustangs in OUA football play Saturday at Alumni Stadium.
“It happens, it’s football,” Terrio said. “I didn’t think about it too much. It is what it is. There’s no way to say the game would’ve ended 10-9. It was a great play, but got called back. It is what it is. I don’t think about it too much. I don’t let it get to me or anything like that.”
Terrio and quarterback Theo Landers connected on a 55-yard catch-and-run play that was called back due to a penalty called for an illegal block.
Terrio, though, is just grateful to be playing.
“Last year I had a heart condition,” the 21-year-old said. “It took away my year.”
Terrio, a top recruit who had a promising rookie season in 2017 was getting ready for his sophomore season when something just didn’t feel right.
“Two days before training camp, my heart started skipping beats. It was odd and it kept coming every day,” he said. “The day before training camp, I got it checked out and I got a call the night before camp started and they were like ‘You’re going to be down for a while until they figure it out.’ It sucks, but I stood in there, hung with the guys and kept grinding. I had a lot of support around me.”
With the diagnosis he had, football had to be put in the background.
“It puts everything into perspective, really. It could’ve been gone,” Terrio said. “Worse things could’ve happened. I could’ve passed away, even. It was serious enough. Now I’m grateful to be here and to be able to show what I can do.”
And he’s quick to thank his teammates for what they did during a tough year and for being there when it was time to get back into the heavy training for this season.
“They’re your brothers, your family,” he said. “They helped me get through that and they’re always supporting me, especially this year coming back. I got a lot of love and that helped a lot.”
And how is he now?
“I’m great. I’m the best I’ve been.”
And it showed in his would-be touchdown play.
“I just felt like my old self, finally – finally break through that shell,” he said. “It’s good for me personally to even be able to do that.”
Although it was a loss, the Gryphons were encouraged by the performance against Western, especially on defence.
“I think it shows us what kind of team we are,” Terrio said. “We went through a lot of adversity, battled back and at the end had a chance. To hold that offence to nine points, a big shout out to the defence. Our offence is coming along. We’re not worried at all. We’re going to be in a good spot. We’re going to keep working and working hard, keep hustling and I think we’re going to be good, in good shape.”
All of the scoring in the game came off the feet of the kickers. Marc Liegghio of Western kicked field goals of 23, 27 and 16 yards while Guelph’s Eric Stranz completed the scoring when he hit a 47-yard field goal with just less than five minutes to go in the game.
Guelph’s offence was held to 263 yards, but that was 94 yards less than what Western gained.
“We’ve got to keep doing what we’re doing,” Terrio said. “We’re practising harder and harder and we’re getting more comfortable in the offence. Things are flowing. Despite what the scoreboard says, I honestly don’t have any problems with our offence or anything with our team. To get rolling, we’ve got to keep doing what we’re doing and that’s just working hard.”
Next up for the Gryphons is their annual Homecoming Game next Saturday. They’re to host the Ottawa Gee-Gees in what will be their final home game of this year’s regular season.
“I’ve only been in one so far, but it’s a good time,” Terrio said of the Homecoming tilt. “There’s a lot of energy that you can feed off of. We’re all definitely looking forward to it, but the most important thing is just getting the win, for sure.”