CAMBRIDGE, Mass. -- Jesse Gwozdz new perfectly when to hit the hole and when to wait in what was a multi-layered performance against host BB&N this afternoon.
Shadowing his trap blocker up the field, the junior opened his day by turning a simple dive play into an 80-yard touchdown scramble late in the first half. A drive later, Gwozdz was masterfully bobbing and weaving behind his punt blockers for a 66 yard score and a defining 29-12 halftime lead for the defending ISL champs
Doubling as both a big play producer and the defensive back tasked with covering 6-foot-5 Wake Forest-bound tight end Brendan O'Neil, Gwozdz totaled 173 yards and two touchdowns to drive Governor's (3-0) to the program's 12th consecutive victory with a 36-12 defeat of the Knights (1-2) at Nichols Field this afternoon.
“I stepped up the field real quick and no one was back there so I kept running,” said Gwozdz.
“Might be one of the best high school games I have seen one kid play on both sides of the ball,” added Governor's coach Jim O’Leary.
The Governors were aided by another strong performance from senior Elijah Morrissey who ran 21 times for 127 yards and a touchdown. The senior rushed for the Red Dogs' first score then broke a nine yard dive to set up the winning touchdown.
Down 12-7, Governor's senior quarterback Tate Jozokos found the outside edge on a bootleg sweep and scrambled nine yards for the
winner a 15-12 lead at 4:56 in the first.
“The defense has to take away certain things we do and as soon as they do that we go to the next option,” said O'Leary. “We keep setting each other up.”
Governor's scored 22 points in the final five minutes of the first half.
Early Prowess, Late Trouble: The Knight's looked to be in control early after forcing a pair of first-half turnover's to set up the first score then adding a touchdown to maintain there lead. However, 29 unanswered points and four second half turnovers stunted BB&N.
The Knights opened the scoring by turning a fumbled redzone pitch into a six-yard delayed pass through triple coverage from sophomore Cole O'Connor to O'Neil for a 6-0 advantage at 2:46 in the first quarter.
After allowing an 11-yard trap-play for six points by Morrissey, O'Connor worked a pair of quick passes to O'Neil and senior Willie Peoples, for seven and ten yards respectively, to set up another score.
A two-yard dive by O'Connor put the Knights ahead 12-6 early in the second half.
“We tried to find a couple weaknesses in their defense,” said BB&N coach John Papas. “(Quick passes) are part of our game plan. We just fell apart the last four minutes of the first half.
BB&N failed on an onside kick attempt following the score.
Quest to Repeat: A one yard pass from Jozokos to sophomore Colin Smith with six minutes remaining added the final points in what was another undefeated run to start the season for second year coach O'Leary. The Governor's head man lead his program to a 9-0 record last year, grabbing both the ISL title and a NEPSAC Bowl championship.
“It is just repetition,” said O'Leary. “You just have to keep going and get better and better at everything. We knew we were in for a fight and we came to play.”
GOVERNOR'S 36, BB&N 12
GOV (3-0) 7- 22 - 0 - 7 --- 36
BBN (1-2) 6 - 6 - 0 - 0 --- 12
B – Brendan O'Neil 6 pass from Cole O'Connor (kick failed)
G – Eli Morrissey 11 run (Colin Smith kick)
B – O'Connor 2 run (pass failed)
G – Tate Jozokos 9 run (Jozokos run)
G – Jesse Gwozdz 80 run (Smith kick)
G – Jesse Gwozdz 66 punt return (Smith kick)
G – Smith 1 pass from Jozokos (Smith kick)