By Chris Zadorozny
A cold and brisk night in Allen Park brought some exciting football to the fans of the Jaguars, as they defeated the Woodhaven Warriors, 28-13 this past Friday.
Led by senior quarterback Nick Fulton and junior running back Manny Andrade, the Jaguars pounced on the young Warrior team, as Fulton threw for 225 yards, as well as two touchdowns.
Andrade followed up Fulton’s performance with 15 carries for 92 yards along with three receptions for seven yards, and a touchdown on the night.
Despite the win, it was a slow start for the Jags, as the Warriors were on the board first, as they controlled much of the first quarter.
“We kind of got off to a slow start, and gave up a 3rd-and-27 bomb, which is uncharacteristic, and then we drove down and gave up a red zone turnover,” said Jaguars Coach Tom Hoover. “After that we settled down and started playing better.”
The Jaguars were able to keep the Warriors off the board until the 4:51 mark of the first quarter, when Warriors junior quarterback Niko France found senior running back Dominic Moore for a 71-yard touchdown reception, the same pass Hoover mentioned earlier.
After the Jags jumped off side, Woodhaven failed on a two-point conversion attempt, but still led 6-0.
Fulton led the Jaguars with six plays all the way to the Woodhaven 47-yard line, but failed to convert on fourth down, resulting in a turnover.
Things weren’t looking good for the Jaguars as the second quarter was ready to begin, but France threw an interception on the first play of the quarter. It didn’t result in points for the Jaguars, but it woke them up, and on their very next drive, senior running back Ryan Oakley found the end zone on a 17-yard touchdown run.
The Jaguars were fortunate enough to convert their two-point conversion after an offside flag on the Warriors, and just like that, it was 8-6 Jaguars with 5:57 to go in the first half.
Allen Park’s defense came out and did a job on the Warrior’s following drive and forced a turnover on downs.
With 2:28 remaining in the first half and starting on their own 30-yard line, Fulton only need one big play to get into Woodhaven territory.
A 56-yard reception by senior tight end Jake Barann put the Jaguars in the Warrior red zone.
Four plays and a pass interference call on Woodhaven later, Andrade found the end zone with a 4-yard touchdown run. After the kick from junior Rachel Caswell, it was now Allen Park 15 Woodhaven 6 with 57 seconds left in the first half.
The Warriors didn’t have much time to try and get that touchdown back, but they did get the ball to start the second half. Unfortunately, the start the second half wasn’t what Warrior head coach Keith Christnagel was hoping for. “ France threw an interception on the very first play and Allen Park made sure to capitalize on this turnover. It took the Jaguars just two plays to find the end zone.
Another 56-yard reception for Barann, but this time it was a touchdown. With the Jaguars now up 22-6 just over a minute into the second half, deflated the Warriors a bit, but they were determined to make a comeback.
They made it all the way into Allen Park territory, making it as far as the Jaguar nine-yard line, but unfortunately, a seven-yard keeper by France on 4th- and-9 wasn’t enough, and they turned it over.
Woodhaven never got that close the rest of the third quarter. When the fourth quarter started, it was the Warriors’ ball, but an interception at their own 36-yard line put everything on the line.
Fulton found junior wide receiver Antonio Reviere for a 36-yard touchdown reception just one play after the interception.
A 28-6 lead was nearly untouchable at this point, and Woodhaven couldn’t find a way to get back into Jaguar territory. They did score once more, with 6.3 seconds to go in the game, on an 80-yard run by senior Akiel Bean.
Despite the loss, Christnagel was proud of the way his team performed. “We had our chances, we had some great passes, some great plays, but we couldn’t finish.”
Next week, the Warriors (0-3) will battle Kennedy, while Allen Park will look to feed off this win against always tough Roosevelt.
To read the original post that appeared in The News-Herald, on September 14, 2013, go to www.miprepzone.com/thenewsherald