The Football Tradition for the Prep League in


Jays meet challenge

Jesuit runs over Tigers to earn win in annual rivalry

Friday, October 06, 2006

By Pierce W. Huff

A motivational T-shirt backfired Thursday for Holy Cross in the continuation of the state's oldest high school football rivalry.

Some Holy Cross students came to their annual game against Jesuit wearing green camouflage T-shirts that read "OPEN SEASON BLUE JAY HUNTING" in bold orange letters.

But the Jesuit football team was not amused, and the Blue Jays got the last laugh with a 21-7 victory against Holy Cross in both team's Catholic League (District 8-5A) opener at Tad Gormley Stadium.

Jesuit running back Gerald Brown, a 5-foot-8, 175-pound senior, rushed for 100 yards and one touchdown. Running back Payten Jason, a 6-foot, 190-pound sophomore, rushed for 51 yards. Running back James Barrios, a 6-foot, 210-pound senior, rushed for 31 yards and two touchdowns.

"I saw that T-shirt, and I was thinking that Holy Cross was going to be in for a long night," Brown said.

Jesuit defensive lineman Anthony Stovall said he laughed when he saw the Holy Cross T-shirts.

"I just said that they didn't know what they were going to be in for," Stovall said.

Jesuit leads the all-time series 50-36-1. The Blue Jays have won six of the past 10 games. Thursday's game was Jesuit's first victory against Holy Cross since 2004, when the Blue Jays won 24-21.

Jesuit (3-3, 1-0) rushed for 151 yards in the first half and led 14-0 at halftime. Brown rushed for 81 yards and one touchdown on 10 carries. Jason rushed for 46 yards on seven carries. Barrios rushed for 22 yards and one touchdown on five carries.

The Blue Jays took the opening drive of the game and drove 80 yards in 14 plays for a touchdown to take a 7-0 lead. Jesuit converted three third downs on the drive, including a 2-yard touchdown run by Barrios on third-and-goal from the Holy Cross 2-yard line.

Jesuit took its third possession of the game and drove 91 yards on 10 running plays for a touchdown

to increase its lead to 14-0 with 4:28 remaining in the first half. Brown finished the possession with a 4-yard touchdown run around left end.

"They did a great job of stuffing the ball down our throats," Holy Cross Coach Barry Wilson said.

Holy Cross (3-3, 0-1) had two chances to score in the final minutes of the first half, but came up short. The Tigers drove 17 yards in four plays to the Jesuit 33-yard line. But Holy Cross kicker Danny Hrapmann was short on a 50-yard field goal attempt with 2:51 remaining.

Jesuit increased its lead to 21-0 when Barrios scored on a 1-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter.

Holy Cross scored when receiver Paul Lacassagne recovered a fumble in the end zone by Tigers running back Logan Rychaert with 20 seconds remaining in the game.

"All week long we practiced and prepared well," Jesuit quarterback Troy Mathews said. "We knew this was going to be a battle."

And Jesuit got the last laugh.