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Jesuit, Ikott hang on against Reagan

glenn mccarthy

photo: glenn mccarthy

Crusaders Notch Big Playoff Win

Houston- The Houston Strake Jesuit Crusaders advanced to the second round of the Texas 6A football playoffs for the only the third time since joining the UIL in 2004. They did so with a win over the Houston Reagan Bulldogs, 21-13. In 2005 they beat Fort Bend Marshall in the first round before succumbing to Cypress Falls and in 2008 they knocked off Katy Mayde Creek before falling to Houston Madison.  Jesuit improves to 7-4 on the year and will face Cypress Creek next weekend. Reagan ends their impressive season at 9-2.

Jesuit behind Tulane baseball signee, quarterback Zach Zubia and tailback Josh Reece moved the ball at will against the Bulldog defense gaining 224 yards to 96 for Reagan in the first half.

Jesuit had a 16 play drive starting at the end of the first quarter. On 3rd and 13 at the Bulldog 16 yard line, Zubia targeted senior Christian Charbonnet in the end zone and was rewarded with a Reagan defender draped over his receiver and a fresh set of downs on the interference call. Reece ran on 2nd and goal at the 10 and they once gain got another set of downs when a Bulldog linebacker grabbed his facemask. Finally with 2nd and goal at the 4 yard line Zubia found Charbonnet for pay dirt and a 7-0 Crusader lead.

Zubia’s prettiest pass came with 1:20 left in the half when he scrambled right saw a wide open Christian McStravick and dropped an absolute beauty of a ball into him. McStravick, A Boston College pledge, shook off one tackler and ran down the right sideline for a 67 yard touchdown reception and a 14-0 lead.

It seemed to be all Jesuit. That’s when Shane Johnson and the Bulldogs went to work. From their own 33 they got things started with a pass interference call. Johnson then ran for an 18-yard scamper down to the 20. On 2nd and 10 at the 20 Johnson found receiver Patrick Roberts in the end zone for a touchdown as time ran out in the half.  The score cut the lead to 14-7 with the Crusaders still leading.

Reagan's Jonathan Campos intercepted Zubia on Strake’s first drive in the second half. Reagan then needed only 27 yards to tie the game. A couple plays later, Johnson once again found Roberts for a 9 yard strike and the Bulldogs lined up to kick the PAT for the tie. They couldn't get the snap down and weren't even able to attempt kicking the ball. With the failed PAT Strake still held the lead by a point, 14-13.

Reagan had a scoring opportunity late in the third when junior Jesuit linebacker George Ikott had a punt bounce off him during a return. Reagan started at their 41 yard line. Five plays later, Ikott had some redemption when he intercepted Johnson on 3rd and 12.  The turnover stopped the Bulldog drive at the Jesuit nine yard line.

Jesuit then went on a methodical drive to effectively end the game in the middle of the 4th quarter. On 3rd and 7 at their 45 yard line Zubia scrambled right and looked to be sacked by two Bulldog pursuers when he shot putted a pass to Charbonnet.  Charbonnet turned a huge loss of yardage into a 16 yard gainer.  Zubia and the Crusaders found themselves facing a 4th and 1 at the Bulldog 20 yard line with a little over 3 minutes left in the game. It was a case of "convert and the game is over." Running back Josh Reece did just that. He found a hole and had about 8 yards but that's when Bulldog linebacker Quinterlo Baker, who harassed the Crusaders all night, took the ball out of his hands.

The Bulldogs were in business and only had to get within field goal distance for a chance to win the game. That's when Ikott had the play of the night. Shane Johnson was moving to his right, he fired to the short side of the field and only found Ikott who tight-roped it in down the right sideline for a 16 yard TD interception return.  The pick six made gave the Crusaders the lead and the win 21-13.

Zubia finished the game 14-27, 223 yards passing and 2 touchdowns for Strake Jesuit.

Jesuit improves to 7-4 on the year and will face Cy Creek next weekend. Reagan ends their impressive season at 9-2.

by Glenn McCarthy

Players of the game:
Offense- quarterback Zach Zubia
Defense- linebacker George Ikott

Team 1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
Strake Jesuit 14 0 0 7  - 21
Houston Reagan 0 7 6 0  - 13

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