HomeSportsEverything goes right for Jackson Christian in rivalry win

Everything goes right for Jackson Christian in rivalry win

Jackson Christian and University School of Jackson entered their matchup on Friday both undefeated, and unless the game failed to end for some reason, someone was leaving with their first loss.

The Eagles made sure early and often that team wouldn’t be them as they accomplished two things for the first time in school history according to longtime Jackson Christian statistician Greg Armour – they beat USJ with a running clock and shut them out.

The final score was 41-0.

The Eagles (4-0) scored most of their points off big plays.

Deuce Lawrence scored the first touchdown on a 36-yard run.

“I was just trying to run hard every time they called my number, and the line and everybody else did a great job helping me get there,” Lawrence said.

The Austin Kelley-Jay’Len Mosley connection would then make its presence known as the two combined for a 51-yard score on the first play of the second quarter for the 14-0 lead.

“It feels great to get this win because it’s another game to win, but everybody did their job well and we came out on top,” Kelley said after the win.

Easton Jones completed the first-half scoring with a 12-yard run for the 21-0 halftime lead.

The score came after the teams traded turnovers, and the Eagles’ score was set up by a Kai Wyatt interception.

“We’d been working on coverage for that play all week, but we decided yesterday to change the coverage,” Wyatt said. “At first, I was supposed to move up and be ready for someone coming up the middle, but we changed it where I’d cover to that side, so I was there when the ball was thrown.”

The USJ defense forced Jackson Christian to work for its fourth touchdown as the Eagles went for it on fourth-and-goal from the 1-yard line. After three short runs failed, Kelley took the snap and rolled out to find tight end Daniel Green open for the pass.

The Eagles got the clock running in the final minute of the third quarter when Lawrence ran for his second score of the night, this time from 10 yards out.

The scoring finished on the last play of the quarter when Mosley stepped up to get an interception and returned it about 30 yards for the final 41-0 margin.

“Whenever you play a big rivalry game like this, you want to have a good game and everyone do their job,” Mosley said. “And all over the place, everyone was doing what we’d worked on all week.

“Coaches put together a great plan, and everyone executed.”

Jackson Christian head coach Darby Palmer had a similar response to the people who came by and told him “good job” after the win.

“It was them out there doing it. They were the ones who did the good job,” Palmer would say to the fan walking by while pointing at the players celebrating the win on the field.

Palmer was also quick to credit offensive coordinator Will Rickard.

“He does a great job every week at putting our offense in the best position in different situations to be successful, and tonight is just another example of what he can do,” Palmer said. “USJ has a good defense who’s stopped a lot of people this year, but Coach Rickard saw a few things he thought our guys could do, and they did it.”

For USJ (3-1), it’s back to work as they prepare to do something they haven’t had to do so far this year – rebound from a loss.

“This is one game, and it’s not a region game,” said USJ head coach Derrick Pritchard. “We made a lot of mistakes tonight, and we’ll get to work on Monday eliminating those mistakes, and then we’ll begin work on moving on from this.

“We talked to the guys at halftime that friends will leave you in times of adversity. Brotherhood is forged when guys stick with you during those trying times. I think this is a time we get to find out if our team is a brotherhood, and how we bounce back could define the rest of our season. So we need to be able to put this game in the past and begin work for next week.”

Jackson Christian opens region play in Division I-A next week at home against Fayette Academy.

USJ will be at home against South Gibson for one more non-region game before the Bruins get into league play.

Brandon Shields,

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