St. Paul’s cruises past Jesuit for first win, 31-6
COVINGTON, La. – Grant Grosch had five catches for 131 yards and two touchdowns as St. Paul’s dominated Jesuit 31-6 in a non-district showdown at Hunter Stadium.
The Wolves evened their record at 1-1 while Jesuit is off to an 0-2 start for the first time since 2009.
“The difference from last week to this week is that we played more as a team,” Grosch said. “We had a good game on both sides of the ball, and in practice we made sure we had better chemistry on passes with the deep ball.”
St. Paul’s hosts Christian Brothers (Tenn.) next week while Jesuit entertains Central-B.R., both on Friday, September 15.
Last year’s contest was much closer as it took an interception by defensive back Jack Bonaldi in overtime to seal a 13-10 victory.
Jesuit’s Michael Torry returned the opening kickoff to the St. Paul’s 42, but the Wolves made their presence felt on defensive immediately when defensive back Conrad Robinson intercepted quarterback Alex Watermeier on the first play of the drive.
Two possessions later, St. Paul’s quarterback Johntae McDowell found Grosch open for a 49-yard touchdown midway through the first quarter for a 7-0 lead after a Robby Ferrante extra point.
On the ensuing drive by Jesuit, the Wolves’ special teams struck when Zack Bodenheimer blocked a punt that was recovered by Connor Eikel Blue Jay 25. This time, the offense cashed in as McDowell capped a five-play, 25-yard drive with a 10-yard touchdown pass to Jack Mashburn to push the lead to 14-0 with less than three minutes to play in the first quarter.
“We just had a great week of practice because every day this week, we were focused,” St. Paul’s coach Ken Sears said. “We worked on fundamentals and eliminated our turnovers. We had a great first half, but I wasn’t pleased with the second half. It’s a work in progress.”
Grosch added his second touchdown of the first half when he caught a 37-yard pass from McDowell and Ferrante added a 38-yard field goal with less than 10 seconds remaining as the team took a 24-0 into the locker room at halftime.
In the second half, the Blue Jays got more of what they didn’t want in the form of another big play by Grosch, who ran the opening kickoff down to the Jesuit 11. On the second play, McDowell hit Nick Stanton for a 10-yard touchdown, as the Wolves’ lead ballooned to 31-0.
All game long, St. Paul’s defensive end Noah Seiden led the charge for a feisty unit that limited Jesuit to 156 yards in total offense. The senior had at least five sacks and helped create pressure that limited the Blue Jays to six completions.
“We worked on playing thorugh the whistle had did more running, and I think we definitely stepped it up,” Seiden said. “It was a total team victory.”
Jesuit avoided the shutout when Watermeier passed to Drew Black for a 10-yard score late in the third quarter. After a missed extra point, the St. Paul’s lead was 31-6.
“St. Paul’s is talkented and very well coached, and we didn’t help ourselves at all,” Jesuit coach Mark Songy said. “On special teams, we couldn’t have played much worse than we did. We’re still not getting into a rhythm on offense, and they were smart enough not to try and run into the teeth of our defense, which is our strongest point.”
Rushing – Johntae McDowell, 6-36; Logan Davenport, 9-16; Grant Grosch, 1-8; Corey Williamson, 7-1
Receiving – Grant Grosch, 5-131, 2 TDs; Jack Mashburn, 5-28, TD; Nick Stanton, 1-7, TD;Logan Davenport, 1-6; Cameron Vidal, 2-4
Passing – Johntae McDowell, 14-24-0-171, 4 TDs
Rushing – Michael Torry, 15-76; Willie Robinson, 12-46; Alex Watermeier, 5-(-13)
Receiving – Noah Varnado, 2-13; Drew Black, 2-12, TD; Robert McMahon, 1-12; Dylan McKeough, 1-11
Passing – Alex Watermeier, 6-2-1-48, TD
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