A measure of just how well the St. James Wildcats having been playing is when the coach can claim it wasn’t one of his squad’s better efforts despite a 35-7 win at Assumption on Friday night in a game that feature two unbeaten teams.
“We didn’t play our best ball game. I think Assumption did a lot of good things. Their defense kind of put our offense a little bit out of rhythm. Our defense did a good job,” St. James coach Robert Valdez said as his team improved to 5-0 on the season.
An Assumption fumble recovered by Savion Jones set up the first St. James score, a 14-yard touchdown run by running back Sean Lebeouf for a quick 7-0 Wildcats lead less than three minutes into the game.
A 20-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Shamar Smith to Shazz Preston made it 14-0 with 1:36 remaining in the opening quarter.
Smith raced 21 yards to set up his touchdown run from a yard out to extend the St. James lead to 20-0. The touchdown was set up by an interception by J’kory Ester.
Along with Ester’s pickoff, St. James defenders Tyler Steib and Brad Batiste each had to interceptions. Add in Jones’ earlier fumble recovery and the Wildcats defense forced six turnovers.
The Wildcat defense constantly harassed the Assumption quarterback, who was 8 of 24 passing for 58 yards.
Smith made the most of his 6 of 21 passing performance, tossing two touchdown passes, including a 39 yarder to Preston early in the fourth quarter.
The St. James quarterback, who topped 100 yards rushing, added a 3-yard touchdown to round out the scoring.
“Playing the schedule we are playing, the guys have to be able to be crisp every week,” Valdez said. “I’m just glad to go on the road and get a win and get back and refocus and fix the mistakes that were made.”