St. James rallies for big win over Baldwin
By David Svoboda PrepsKC staff writer
St. James Academy scored 14 points over the game’s final three minutes, 19 seconds to grab a heart-stopping 42-31 win over Baldwin Friday night.
The Thunder, now 3-0, got those two late TDs off of the arm of senior quarterback Jansen Keyes, who ended the night with 300 yards of total offense, including 237 and four scores on an 11-of 16 performance through the air.
The go-ahead score with 3:19 left was a 22-yard strike on second and 6 to junior Alex King, who had a pretty fair night himself.
King ended the contest with 7 catches for 134 yards and two TDs. He also had 7 rushes for 35 yards and another two scores, one of which was a heads-up recovery of a fumble by teammate Jake Bade which bounded into the end zone.
None of King’s four TDs, however, was as big as the one late which lifted the Thunder, which had trailed by 10 points halfway through the third quarter at 31-21, to their first lead since just under a minute into the second quarter.
And Keyes, King and Co. weren’t limited to doing things physically. They also used their smarts to help the Thunder along.
“Our guys called some plays tonight,” a happy St. James Coach Tom Radke said on the field after the game. “Our quarterback called some plays, our line called some plays (saying) ‘hey, this is going to work.’
“And every time they called a play it worked. Hats off to them.”
To say this one was exciting would be an understatement. Matching the heroics of Keyes and King, virtually play-for-play it seemed, were the Baldwin duo of senior quarterback Tyler Cawley and junior tailback Cornell Brown.
“You had athletes on both sides making plays,” Radke said, obviously relieved that his guys had made more, particularly late.
Cawley was 12-of-22 for 227 yards through the air with 3 TDs, and had 8 rushes for an additional 50 yards. Brown had 11 carries for 69 yards and a TD of his own on the ground and one on a catch in a heroic effort for the Bulldogs, which fell to 2-1.
The contest started out as a shootout, and remained that way virtually throughout.
St. James scored first, ending a 7-play, 50 yard drive when Keyes hit Tommy Huppe with an 18-yard scoring strike to put the Thunder up 7-0.
Baldwin answered back with a field goal and then a touchdown, which came on Cawley’s two-yard pass to Brown with just under two minutes left in the first quarter that gave the Bulldogs a 10-7 lead.
St. James answered quickly on the aforementioned King recovery of the Bade fumble, which came at the tail end of a tough 62-yard run by the junior, who was hit at the two and coughed the ball into the end zone, only to have King corral the bouncing ball for the lead at 14-10 after the extra point.
The Bulldogs scored the next two touchdowns – on a Cawley throw and a Brown run – to go up by 10 for the first time at 24-14 just a little more than midway through the second period.
The Thunder, however, put together a gritty 70-yard, 7-play drive which was capped by a Keyes to King connection of 22 yards (there’s that magic number again) to make it 24-21 Baldwin at the half.
All of the first half heroics did nothing more than set the stage for a second half which saw things in doubt virtually until Baldwin turned the ball over on downs with 1:36 left at its own 25, trailing 35-31.
The last Thunder score came on a fourth-and-14 play with just 11 seconds left as Keyes found tight end Keith Winger with a 29-yard pass as St. James was scrambling to run out the clock following the final Baldwin time out of the contest.
If you would like to purchase photos from this game contact J Robert Schraeder Photography at www.jrobertschraeder.com
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