September 15th, 2018

Special teams give Tigers a one-point win over Central

Block_0 conor revell

Conor Revell

Managing Editor


Special teams give Tigers a one-point win over Central
St. X's Myles Harris looks to make a move with Brycen Harkins blocking / photo by Conor Revell

Football fans often make fun of athletes that only play on special teams, but sometimes it’s the play of those positions that’s the difference between winning and losing a ball-game.

St. Xavier kicker Jeffrey Sexton was 2 for 2 on field goals and made both extra-point tries and played a large part in his team 20-19 victory over visiting Central Friday night.

“That’s the only job you have when you kick,” St. X first-year head coach Kevin Wallace said. “You’re either a winner or loser. I’m so proud of him. He worked so hard in practice the last two weeks. Coach (Tighe) Brown and Coach (Chad) Lyons have worked a lot with our special teams. I look at Coach Lyons and asked him if he can make a 42 yarder and he said yes. His practice showed tonight.”

Reggie Whyte Jr. missed 2 of his 3 PATs for the Yellowjackets (3-2) who were trying to beat the Tigers for just the second time in the 39 game history of the series.

Central led 19-17 before Sexton’s 30-yard field gave St. X (2-2) a 20-19 lead with 9:33 remaining.

“That was a lot closer than the 42 yarder I made,” Sexton said. “I was a lot more confident. My teammates were behind me and I knew that I was going to put it through. I was ready to go.”

The Yellowjackets got the ball back and (Deondre) Howard appeared to have made a big 15-yard catch, but safety James Taylor stripped it.

“He stripped the ball,” Wallace said. “That was a huge play. And then at the end of the game he redirected a guy to keep him from running across the field. He and Jude (Carlon) have both played a lot of football. They’re athletic and should be really good players. I think they’ll look at the film and say they’re not playing their best but I think a lot of guys can say that on this football team.”

Jude Carlon fell on top of it to give the ball back to the Tigers.

“The guy was running his route and James Taylor made a great move to strip the ball,” Carlon said. “I just fell on it.”

Central would get the ball back one more time, but was only able to make it to midfield.

St. X scored first when quarterback Douglas Bohdaine sneaked it in from 1-yard out to make it 7-0 with 1:31 left in the opening quarter.

Keegan Sullivan, the normal starter, who is still trying to bounce back from an ankle injury, came in, and disaster struck.

Quintez Peyton picked off the senior quarterback and returned it 54-yard touchdown to tie the game at seven with 7:57 to go in the first-half.

Wallace sent Sullivan back out there and three plays later Ukari Baker got his own pick-six returning it 57 yards to put the Yellowjackets in-front 13-7 with 6:05 to play in the opening half. Whyte missed his first PAT following the score.

“If I believe in somebody, I believe in somebody,” Wallace said. “I believe in both him and Doug Bohdaine to help us. The first pick bounced off the kid head and it really wasn’t Keegan’s fault. The second one wasn’t a very good throw. Keegan does a good job and he has the key to ride that horse.”

Sexton pulled the Tigers within 13-10 at the half when his long 42-yard field goal sailed through the uprights.

“We have been practicing all week with pressure situations,” Sexton said. “My teammates and coaches all trust me. I knew I was gonna put it through. I had been practicing all week for this.”

Myles Harris got St. X started in the second-half with a 20 and 22 yard run on back-to-back plays.

Two plays later Sullivan connected with Desmond Andrews-Ogbogu for an 11-yard score to put St. X back out in-front 17-13 with 8:57 remaining in the third quarter.

“We have been working on that play for a long time,” Andrews-Ogbogu said. “I was waiting for Keegan to get in there, we have been working together all summer, and it worked out well for us.”

Central fought back and made it 19-17 when quarterback Malik Goodall sneaked it in from 1-yard out with 1:41 to go in the third quarter.

Sexton then made his go-ahead field goal on the next drive.

The Yellowjackets outgained the Tigers 355-238 yards.

Bohdaine started at quarterback for St. X and was 6 of 7 for 38 yards while Sullivan completed 7 of 11 passes for 67 yards, one touchdown, and two interceptions.

Harris was a workhorse at running back and carried it 24 times for 116 yards. He was playing in place of Anthony Moretti who was out with a concussion. Logan Davis also had five carries for for 35 yards.

“Logan had some good runs too,” Wallace said. “Both of those guys might look at films and question some of the things they did. But for the most part they both did a good job. The biggest thing is that they took care of the football.”

Aric Lyons was the Tigers top receiver and caught two passes for 38 yards. Grant Goodman had three receptions for 15 yards.

Goodall quarterbacked Central and completed 13 of 20 passes for 170 yards and ran for 104 yards and one touchdown on 20 carries.

“We knew their quarterback can move,” Carlon said. “We just wanted to stick with our game plan. We knew he was going to run the ball quite a few times and we just needed to contain him.”

Williams was the workhorse back for the Yellowjackets and rushed nine times for 78 yards and Dalquan Beason was the top receiver with six catches for 102 yards.

 

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