Kentwood run game shines in 49-27 victory over Kennedy Catholic


Kent, Wash. – After only rushing for 143 yards in their first two games combined, the Kentwood Conquerors exploded for 280 yards on the ground against the Lancers of John F. Kennedy Catholic High School.  Saturday evening’s victory pushes the Conquerors’ record to 2-1 (1-0 NPSL).


How it happened:  After a 43-yard interception return set them up in the red zone, the Kennedy Catholic Lancers used a 1-yard touchdown run to put them up 7-0 following a converted extra point.  On the following kick off, a return by junior running back/receiver Ja’Mezz Johnson gave the Conks the ball on the Kennedy 48-yard line.  Seven plays later, all runs, senior running back Tayvonne Miller punched it in from 9-yards out to put the Conks on the board 7-6 following a missed extra point.


The Kentwood defense forced a Kennedy punt after a quick 3 and out.  Starting on the Lancer 43-yard line, the Kentwood offense looked to once again take advantage of great field position.  After a key 4th down conversion run by senior running back Dyson Johnson, the Conks found the end zone with senior quarterback Justin Seiber hitting Jamezz Johnson up the seam for a touchdown.  The 27-yard scoring pass gave the Conks a 13-7 lead following a Manav Gill extra point.


The Lancers vaunted passing attack looked to respond, but on 3rd and 5, senior safety Juwaan Gault stepped in front of a post route for an interception, returning it to the Lancer 46-yard line.  Unable to capitalize off the great field position, the Conks were forced to punt it back to Kennedy.  Eight plays later the Lancers connected on a 43-yard touchdown pass, reclaiming a 14-13 lead after a converted extra point.


On the following possession, the Conquerors were faced with a 4th and 2 from their own 45-yard line.  Opting for a fake punt, KW appeared to convert for the first down, however the play was negated by a penalty, and the Conks were forced to punt.  Seven plays later Kennedy connected on a 20-yard scoring pass, extending the lead to 20-13 after sophomore Nick Musga blocked the extra point.


Kentwood, looking to answer, used a couple of Seiber passes to put themselves in the red zone.  The first a 15-yarder across the middle to senior receiver Jacob Cronn, and the second a 30-yarder to senior receiver Stephen Watson, who made a leaping grab to put the Conks on the Kennedy 17-yard line.  Three plays later Dyson Johnson punched in from 1-yard out to even the score at 20-20 following a Gill extra point.


After a pooch kick was fair caught by the Lancers on their own 44-yard line, the Kennedy offense proceeded to throw 4-straight incompletions to turn the ball over on downs.  Kentwood used 9-straight run plays to get to the Kennedy 1-yard line before Watson caught a Seiber pass with :55 seconds remaining in the half to put the Conks back up 27-20 after another Gill extra point.  The Lancers tried to make a last-ditch effort to score before half, but sophomore safety Alphonse Oywak tipped a Kennedy pass and junior linebacker Kincade McFarlane was there to intercept, preserving the 7-point lead at half.


Post halftime is when the Conquerors ran away with the ball game.  Opening the half on their own 25-yard line, the Conquerors wasted little time moving down the field as Seiber threw over the middle to Watson, who raced 70 yards before being knocked out of bounds at the 3-yard line.  On the very next play Tayvonne Miller punched it in for his second rushing touchdown of the evening, extending the Conks’ lead to 35-20 following a successful 2-point conversion pass from Seiber to Watson.


The Lancers offense was not given a chance to respond as the Conqueror special teams unit recovered a pooch kick at the Kennedy 41-yard line.  Six plays later Seiber found a diving Watson for another Kentwood touchdown, pushing the score to 42-20 after another extra point by Manav Gill.


On the following kick-off Kennedy made sure to recover the Conqueror pooch kick.  Six plays later the Lancers finally answered, with a Lancer receiver making a one-handed catch on a screen pass and racing 50-yards to the end zone, cutting the Conks lead to 42-27 following an extra point conversion.


After a first down, the Conquerors’ next drive stalled and they were forced to punt.  Kennedy gave the ball right back however, as junior linebacker Dominique Pope intercepted a pass to give the Conks great field position at the Kennedy 39-yard line.  Seven plays later, Dyson Johnson rushed for his second score of the game, punching it in from two yards out to extend the lead to 49-27 after another converted Gill extra point.


Notable Statistics:  Offense –

  • RB Tayvonne Miller 27 car 139 yds 2TD
  • RB Dyson Johnson 20 car 107 yds 2TD
  • WR Stephen Watson 6 rec 122 yds 2TD
  • QB Justin Seiber 15/22 245 yds 3TD, INT


Defense –

  • LB Kincade McFarlane 8 Tackles, INT
  • LB Dominique Pope 6 Tackles, TFL, INT, 2PBU
  • DB Juwaan Gault 6 Tackles, INT, PBU


Special Teams –

  • K Manav Gill 5/5 XP, Only 20 yds returned against in the game


Up Next:  The Conquerors are on the road next Friday as they take on the Bears of Tahoma High School (7 p.m at Maple View Middle School)