ROCKY POINT, NC (WECT) - The final memory of the 2017 season for the Trask Titans will be a loss at Southwest Onslow.
It isn't the end that Titans head coach Jonathan Taylor had planned.
"When you leave that field Friday night, you are not thinking there is any way that we are not lasting at least one more week somewhere," Taylor said.
He hoped his team's resume would speak for itself when it came to playoff possibilities. Trask finished the regular season 8-3, the most single-season wins in school history.
The Titans also finished third in Coastal Eight Conference standings.
But when Trask's wins and losses were plugged into Max Preps, the new ranking system used by the North Carolina High School Athletic Association, it wasn't enough. Max Preps hasn't revealed how its ranking system works, but coaches have been told that the computer factors wins, losses, and margin of victory.
"I am not going to run it up on anybody," Taylor said of padding statistics by running up the score on opponents. "To think that might have cost us a spot, that's really disappointing."
Another factor was the Titans' strength of schedule. The computer gave teams with losses against better teams more credit than some of Trask's victories.
"I feel bad for the kids because they did everything that we asked them to do," Trask Athletic Director Ed Gilroy said. "We set the schedule and the kids did what they were supposed to do."
Taylor spoke to officials at the NCHSAA. While they listened to his issues, he said he believes they understand things need to change.
"We have to do better than that in high school athletics," Taylor said. "We have to fix this flawed system because at the end of the day, we have to remember it's about these kids."
"Max Preps is a corporate sponsor, and it's my understanding it's a two-year commitment to this," Gilroy said. "But let's hope there are some changes in it before we have to go through this next year."