West St. John 20, Kentwood 14: Defense fuels Rams to fourth state championship


The LHSAA Prep Basic kicked off Thursday afternoon within the Mercedes-Benz Superdome with a decent contest between No. 1 West St. John and No. three Kentwood. The 2 groups got here into the matchup with a complete of eleven state titles between them however just one might depart the Dome with another piece of hardware so as to add to their trophy case.

The sport turned out to be a defensive battle between two evenly matched squads however the Ram protection gave West St. John the sting in a 20-14 victory over Kentwood within the Class championship recreation. 

West St. John got here up with 4 turnovers on the day and the ultimate takeaway by D’Kyri Jackson ended Kentwood’s final shot on the finish zone to wrap up the win.

“These video games examine your coronary heart,” West St. John coach Brandon Walters stated after main the Rams to their fourth state title. “It is superb for the followers nevertheless it’s robust being on the sideline seeing all of that and going via it.”

The curler coaster of feelings was value it in the long run for the Rams (eleven-2), although, after the protection got here up with a number of key stops to protect the win.

A sixteen-yard strike from Kentwood’s Larenz Morris to Trey Palmer reduce West St. John’s result in 20-14 with 5:17 left within the third quarter however the Rams held the Roos scoreless the remainder of the best way.

Kentwood (thirteen-2) had 4 drives within the fourth quarter with an opportunity to take the lead however West St. John pressured two three-and-outs earlier than arising with interceptions on the Roos’ final two possessions.

Kentwood seemed to lastly have one thing happening the third drive making their approach into the purple zone after a forty two-yard run by Morris, however an unwell-suggested throw was picked off close to the objective line by Trenton Develop. The Rams began the drive from their very own 1-yard line however have been capable of get a little bit of respiration room earlier than punting it away on 4th-and-brief.

The Roos took over at their very own forty seven-yard line with 1:20 left within the recreation and obtained an enormous catch from Palmer that may have put the ball on West St. John’s eleven-yard line. The play, nevertheless, was referred to as again because of an ineligible man downfield and Jackson picked off Morris on the next play to seal the win with thirteen seconds left.

“I feel the penalties and sloppiness did us in,” Kentwood coach Jonathan Foster stated. “Not even the turnovers. We’ve got them on the objective line and we get a 5-yard penalty, you’ll be able to’t have that…I feel this was our sloppiest recreation all yr and we picked the flawed recreation to be sloppy.” 

Kentwood completed the sport with a shocking 18 penalties for ninety five yards and a big variety of them have been pre-snap infractions. The Rams in the meantime restricted their errors committing 5 penalties for 37 yards, which helped swing the momentum of their favor regardless of being out-gained 254-224 in complete offense.

Morris accounted for many of these yards for Kentwood operating for ninety one whereas throwing for 107 on eight-of-26 cross makes an attempt. He was named the Most Excellent Participant for the Roos whereas junior operating again Kylan Duhe accepted the identical honor for West St. John.

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