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20 Years: Jesuit 31, TC 21

20 Years: Jesuit 31, TC 21

Two decades.

That's how long it has been since Jesuit football sustained defeat against its biggest rival, Tampa Catholic.

Friday night (Nov. 1) at Jesuit, the Tigers did what they have done every year this millennium - score more points than TC and keep "The Streak" alive, extending it to a remarkable 20 games, by the score of 31-21.

"This isn't just an ordinary win," cornerback Junior Vandeross '22 told the Tampa Bay Times. "It's something that goes from generation to generation."

Friday night, with a huge and raucous Blue Tide student section cheering them on, Jesuit pulled away in the 2nd quarter. Trailing 14-10, the Tigers scored 21 straight points to take control of the game.

During that 21-0 run spanning the 2nd and 3rd quarters, two interceptions by Vandeross got the ball back for Jesuit in good field position, and another interception by Aiden Clark '21 in the final minutes sealed the victory.

Cade Freeman '20 had staked Jesuit to a 3-0 lead after the opening possession with a 40-yard field goal, and it was followed by four short rushing touchdowns, by quarterback Kiael Kelly '21, running back Nick Spurlin '20, and then Kelly and Spurlin again. Freeman was 4-4 on PATs

Numerous big plays set up the touchdowns, including a 60-yard Kelly-to-Christian Jones '20 pass play, a 30-yard run by Ricky Parks '21 (13 carries, 102 yards), and a 55-yard punt return by Jordan Young '20 which was nearly a TD as Young barely stepped out of bounds at the 5-yard line. 

Jesuit (8-2), which had already clinched the District title for the 6th time in head coach Matt Thompson's 7 seasons (The Tigers are of course 7-for-7 vs. TC in Thompson's tenure, hasn't lost since early September and is riding a 7-game winning streak. The Tigers will host a Class 5A, Region 3 Quarterfinal playoff game Friday vs. Eau Gallie (9-1).

Click below for a photo slideshow from the Nov. 1 win over TC.


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