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Written by: Willie McGonigle on Sunday, December 5th, 2021
St Joseph Prep’s Kahseim Phillips Hauls in First Quarter Touchdown in Hawks 49-14 6A Semi-Final over Garnet Valley Photo Creidt:James Quinn
Ridley: The situation was easy a win Saturday and the St. Joseph Prep Hawks would make their seventh consecutive PIAA State Championship. The task wouldn’t be an easy one has the Hawks opponent on the evening was the District 1 Champions Garnet Valley Jaguars who entered the contest averaging a whopping 48.8 points per game.
Well in front of a jammed pack crowd at Ridley’s Phil Merion Field the Hawks showed why they are the three-time defending champions dominating the Jaguars to the tune of 49-14 advancing to Hershey for the eight time in school history.
“We got an unbelievable staff that works so hard to prepare these guys, my name gets written on it but there’s a whole lot of people, our players, staff, administration, our families. We are family and we are looking forward to taking our family to Hershey.” Hawks 3rd year head coach Tim Roken said of his program.
After both teams traded punts on each of their first two possessions the Hawks got on board following a 54-yard gain by Samaj Jones put the Hawks into Jaguar territory Jones would take to air and connected with Kahseim Phillips for the 7-yard touchdown to give the Hawks the 7-0 lead.
In the second quarter the Hawks offense exploded for 28 points with help from their defense. After Freshman Safety Anthony Sacca intercepted Max Busenkill and returned to the Jaguars 5 yard line Jones needed only one play to extend the Hawks lead to 14-0. Another interception this time by Keenan Nelson Jr on the ensuing Jaguars drive that gave the Hawks the ball on the Jaguar 10 yard-line. This time they needed two plays for Jones to give the Hawks the 21-0 lead.
On the ensuing Jaguars drive they would again take to air this time it worked in their favor has Busenkill connected with Ndozi Okolo for 37-yard touchdown making it 21-7.
But the Hawks came right back down the field and extended lead with 5-yard touchdown run by Josh Barlow.
The Hawks would extend their lead to 35-7 before the half with Jones connecting with Brandon Rehmann for 30-yard touchdown.
“It’s the preparation every week we came into the game we knew they had an explosive offense so all that means for our offense is we had to put points up on the board one way or another.” Jones said of the offense.
Not to be outdone by their offense the Hawks defense showed just how good they can be holding the high-power Jags offense to only 237 yards of total offense and 14 points seven of which game with the game out of hand in the fourth quarter.
The leader of the Hawks defense was Jr. LB Josiah Trotter, Trotter was in on 7 tackles for the game and said “All week we knew who we had to stop and how to stop them, we just all came together and played has a team.”
Trotter who the son of Philadelphia Eagles great Jeremiah Trotter. The elder Trotter can be found on the sideline serving has an assistant coach of the Hawks and it isn’t something the younger Trotter takes for granted.
“It’s a blessing to have him on the sideline coaching me not just through the week but on gameday and telling me what he sees and help me out throughout the game.” Josiah said of his father.
Jones would get the mercy-rule clock started on the Hawks first drive of the second with his one yard touchdown run. Jones finished the game with 151 yards passing and 73 yards rushing. He would also add one more touchdown pass to Elijah Jones from 16-yards out.
Trevor Sacomandi would cap the games scoring with his 36-yard touchdown run for the Jagaurs. The loss brings the end to the story career of Garnet Valley head coach Mike Ricci who will go down has one of the best coaches in Delaware County History.
The Hawks will take on Mt Lebanon in the 6A Final Saturday night at 6 pm.
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