John Curtis dominates University for Division II title

John Curtis dominates University for Division II title


John Curtis dominates University for Division II title


John Curtis Christian took home the 26th football state championship in school history Thursday after a 32-0 win over University Lab at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome that it share of early drama.

Both teams sputtered through a scoreless first quarter, before Curtis tipped the scale in their favor just moments before halftime.

The Patriots (10-2) grabbed the lead with a Raekwon James touchdown run of 37-yards with 3:41 left in the second quarter.

The touchdown was set-up by the third stop on fourth-down of the half by the Patriot defense. U-High lined up to punt, but faked it with a pass from punt Chandler Johnson falling incomplete.

The Cubs (13-1) would go on to convert a measly 1 of 6 fourth down attempts.

Moments later, after another big defensive play, JCCS broke things open.

The Patriots defensive back Hunter Dale interception of University quarterback Manny Miles, son of LSU head coach Les Miles, put the Patriot offense back in business. Dale made a running, over-the-shoulder pick and returned it into Cubs’ territory with 3:22 left before halftime.

With time winding down and the ball at the U-High 13-yard line, Abby Touzet entered the game for the Patriots at quarterback briefly replacing Myles Washington. Touzet fired a screen pass to James who waved and juked his way through the defense for the touchdown and the PAT kick was good this time for a 13-0 halftime lead.

“(The coaches) always teach us time management,” James said. “I knew I had to get it in the endzone. George (Moreira) made a great block, and I got it in the endzone.”

Head coach JT Curtis said he knew his team had prepared well, and waited for his team to break things open.

“I thought that if we could cut out mistakes,” Curtis said. “With time we could figure out what they were doing on defense. We knew it would be a battle.”

Curtis outgained U-High 401-215 in total yards. No Patriot back ran for more than 97 yards indiviually as James led the way. University was led by running back Nick Brossette with 120 yards on 27 carries.

Miles finished the game 6 of 16 for 51 yards and one interception.

The game was not just the first and only loss of the season for University Lab, making their first state championship game appearance in football since 1990, but the game marked the first time this season that the Cubs’ vaunted offense had been held under 33 points in a single game.

“It was a dissappointing night for us,” University Lab coach Chad Mahaffey said. “When you are playing good people, the margin for error is very small. They just did a better job than we did. They are the champions and a great team.”


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