- Game Recap
- Lori Lyons
- November 16, 2012 - 8:10pm
As the final seconds ticked off West St. John’s 48-12 victory over White Castle Friday night, there was little celebration on the field.
It wasn’t that the Rams’ faithful weren’t happy with the win, it’s just that this team is on a mission.
And after a slow start, West St. John scored on its next three possessions and seven of its next eight to coast to a 48-12 victory over its district familiar foe. The Rams (8-3) and White Castle (9-3) met just two weeks ago, with West St. John taking a 41-22 victory.
This time, it wasn’t that close and West St. John dominated.
Sophomore running back Jeremy Jackson and Kylum Favorite combined to rush for 291 yards and three touchdowns on 22 carries. Favorite led with 120 yards on 11 carries with two touchdowns; Jackson added an 84-yard kickoff return to open the third quarter. Justin Bethancourt also scored on a 57-yard punt return in the first half.
Quarterback Austin Howard didn’t sit this one out. He completed 8 of 12 passes for 98 yards and two touchdowns, connecting with Keith Miller and Timothy Nelson on short scores.
The Rams defense meanwhile held White Castle to an early touchdown and a late one, and a total of 282 yards of offense – all but 26 of that rushing and 75 of that on one play. Quarterback Chris Major scored on a 2-yard run in the first quarter. Moses Young scored on a 1-yard run with 28 seconds left in the game.
Rams coach Robert Valdez singled out his defense.
“Our mantra, or any good football team, is you’ve got to play defense,” he said. “If you can couple defense with special teams, it gives you a good chance of success.”
“They came out competitive,” Howard said. “But we know that was going to happen because of the first loss. So we knew what we had to do. We had to buckle down. We got in the game, we kept swinging down and we never led up.”
Both teams moved the ball early, but neither team scored. After exchanging punts, White Castle set up the Rams’ first score with a bad snap on a punt from the Bulldogs’ 14-yard line. Andre Prevot tried to run it, fumbled it, then recovered at the Bulldogs’ 8. From there West St. John needed just two plays to score. Howard tossed a short pass to Miller then Jackson ran for the 2-point conversion for an 8-0 lead with 1:35 remaining in the quarter.
White Castle then chewed some clock. The Bulldogs took over at their own 25-yard line and, seven plays later punted from their own 39. But the Rams crushed punter Prevot and were flagged for the personal foul. With new life at the Rams’ 46, Chris Major drove the Bulldogs to the end zone with 18 plays. He finally dove in from the 1 with 5:00 remaining in the half. The 2-point conversion attempt failed, leaving the Bulldogs trailing 8-6.
The rest of the half – and most of the game -- was all West St. John.
The Rams answered with a five play, 73-yard drive fueled by big plays for Jackson. On the first play from scrimmage he ran for 43 yards to the White Castle 30. Three plays later he caught a 29-yard pass from Howard to get to the 8. He ran the rest with 3:03 remaining to put the Rams ahead 14-6.
That lead was increased a short time later when Justin Bethancourt fielded a punt at his own 43, broke a tackle at the 44 and broke into the open field for a 57-yard touchdown with 1:07 remaining in the half. The Rams had the ball at the White Castle 2 as time expired.
But West St. John extended its lead quickly in the second half. After deferring the opening kickoff, the Rams took the second half kickoff. Rather, Jackson did and returned it 84 yards for a touchdown that made it 28-6 .
Back to back fumbles set up the Rams’ next two touchdowns. Favorite converted one, scoring on a 45-yard touchdown with 10:55 remaining in the third quarter. After the second, the Rams covered 18 yards on six plays. From the Bulldogs 4, Howard connected with Nelson for the score to make it 42-6 with 7:41 left in the third.
The Rams’ final touchdown came on the first play of the fourth quarter when Favorite scored his second touchdown of the night. The play capped a seven play drive that began at the Rams’ own 14-yard line. Favorite got the Rams into Bulldogs territory with a 40 yard run, then capped the drive with a 12-yard touchdown.
After White Castle turned the ball over on downs with 5:55 remaining, the Rams’ scoring streak was stopped by a lost fumble. White Castle recovered at the Rams’ 41-yard line. Ten plays later, with 29 seconds remaining in his season, Moses Young scored from the 1.