Red Raiders Take Momentum In One Series En Route To Victory
The Jamestown football team is scheduled to watch film this morning of Friday night’s Class A-1 game against Kenmore West.
It wouldn’t be the least bit surprising if Coach Tom Langworthy plays back the last 46 seconds of the first half.
More than once.
Quarterback Trey Drake wouldn’t mind.
Neither would wideout Elijah Rojas or all-purpose athlete Demarri Jones.
Heck, the entire team will likely be glued to it, because possessions like the one the Red Raiders had on a cold, misty night at Strider Field rarely happen at any level.
“We did what we had to do,” Drake said.
Needing an offensive pick-me-up, the sophomore signal caller delivered in a big way, directing the Red Raiders 83 yards in five plays, spanning 32 seconds, capped by a 14-yard touchdown pass to Jones.
The TD gave the hosts an 18-6 lead heading into the break on their way to a 33-12 win over a tough, determined Blue Devils’ squad.
“Our kids did a great job answering,” Langworthy said. ” … It was a test for us, a gut-check for us. We knew our kids are physically tough, but today they proved that they’re mentally tough, and that they have the fortitude to overcome when things aren’t going well.”
The victory raised Jamestown’s record to 3-0, heading into next Friday’s road game against Niagara Wheatfield. Kenmore West suffered its first loss and fell to 2-1.
“We’ve had three good weeks now,” Langworthy said. “We’re going to take everyone’s best shot, so we have to be ready.”
Unlike their first two games when they outscored their opponents, 100-12, the Red Raiders were in a battle almost the entire way last night against a Blue Devils’ team that ran the ball effectively and took time off the clock.
Yet, at every turn, the Red Raiders were able to answer.
For the record, Drake finished 12 of 18 for 195 yards and three touchdowns; Jaylen Butera rushed for 59 yards and two TDs and had a 67-yard catch-and-run for another score; Rojas caught five passes for 86 yards and a TD; and Jones rushed for 68 yards and caught four passes for 40 more, but it was his touchdown reception from Drake at the end of the first half that will be remembered the most.
Clinging to a 12-6 lead nearing the end of the second quarter, the Red Raiders took over on their own 17-yard line with 46 seconds remaining.
Langworthy wasn’t about to run out the clock without seeing what his offense could do.
“We knew we had to go quite a ways, but, you know, I tell the kids my goal is to coach fearless and I want them to play fearless, because we prepare for all these things.
“There should be no anxiety. We just have to go for it.”
Drake and company delivered.
On the first play, the sophomore quarterback completed a comebacker on the sideline for 12 yards to Rojas.
On the second snap, Drake made a great throw to Rojas on a fade pattern down the near sideline, good for 41 yards.
On the drive’s third play, Drake connected with Jones for 9 yards.
On the fourth play, Drake was forced out of the pocket and ran out of bounds after a gain of 3.
Finally, on the fifth snap of the drive, from the Blue Devils’ 14, he connected with Jones on a back-shoulder pass for a 14-yard TD.
In 32 seconds, the momentum had changed dramatically.
“The answer? It was huge,” Drake said.
After the break, Kenmore West forced a turnover on Jamestown’s first possession, and turned it into a touchdown, courtesy of a 15-yard pass from Zak Zayatz to Patrick Gerbec. The TD closed the gap to 18-12 with 2:38 remaining in the third quarter.
It took Jamestown exactly one play to seize back control when Drake hit Butera over the middle and the talented junior outraced the Kenmore West defenders to the end zone.
“Any time Jaylen has the ball in his hands, he’s a threat,” Drake said.
Armed with a 26-12 lead, the Red Raiders’ defense stood tall the rest of the way and the offense added a final TD on Butera’s 11-yard scamper with 2:28 remaining in the game.
“I was really proud of the last series,” Langworthy said. ” … I thought our linemen dug in and I was really pleased with how we finished the game.”
NOTES: Kenmore West’s first touchdown came on a 1-yard run from Jason Britton in the second quarter. … Jadiel Johnson led Jamestown’s defense with 13 tackles, Jones had 11 and Cam’ron Mays added eight. … Drake connected with Jones on a 2-point conversion pass and Ella Propheter booted an extra point.
Kenmore West 0 6 6 0 — 12
Jamestown 12 6 8 7 — 33
JHS — Butera 12 run (kick failed)
JHS — Rojas 22 pass from Drake (pass failed)
KW — Britton 1 run (run failed)
JHS — Jones 14 pass from Drake (pass failed)
KW — Gerbec 15 pass from Zayatz (pass failed)
JHS — Butera 67 pass from Drake (Jones pass from Drake)
JHS — Butera 11 run (Propheter kick)