Taste of victory sweet as Jets collar Bulldogs 12-0 on Homecoming

Posted 10/25/19

SILER CITY — You’d be hard-pressed to say Jordan-Matthews’ 2019 Homecoming could have been any sweeter.

Snapping a four-game losing streak, the Jets posted their first shutout in almost …

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Taste of victory sweet as Jets collar Bulldogs 12-0 on Homecoming

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Posted

SILER CITY — You’d be hard-pressed to say Jordan-Matthews’ 2019 Homecoming could have been any sweeter.

Snapping a four-game losing streak, the Jets posted their first shutout in almost three years and won their first Homecoming game in five seasons while capturing their first-ever PAC 7 2A Conference triumph to climb out of the league cellar by outlasting a stubborn Trinity squad 12-0 Friday evening at Phil E. Senter Stadium.

Collaring the Bulldogs for the first time in three meetings in a series that began in 2017, J-M improved to 1-3 in the conference and 2-7 overall, whereas Trinity was shut out for the fifth time this season in dropping to 0-3 in the league standings and 0-8 for the year.

The last time Jordan-Matthews blanked an opponent was in a 26-0 conquest of Carrboro on October 28, 2016, while the Jets’ last Homecoming win was a 49-0 rout of Chatham Central on August 29, 2014.

Friday night’s victory also halted J-M’s 15-game losing skid against PAC 7 rivals since joining the conference three years ago.

While Jordan-Matthews’ rushing attack was held to just 80 yard on 38 carries, quarterback Calvin Schwartz enjoyed his most productive outing of the season, completing six-of-16 passes for a career-high 105 yards despite tossing two interceptions.

“We knew we would be in a dogfight with Trinity and felt like the game would be won late,” said Jets’ coach Sam Spencer. “Our game plan was to run twin sets and attack the weak side, but they did a good job taking away Jacquez Thompson’s ability to get to the edge to make us have to beat them with somebody other than him. So Calvin Schwartz stepped up and had his best passing night of the year, helping keep drives alive with key completions, especially in the second half, to allow us to retain possession and run time off the clock once we got the lead, while the defense did its job by pitching a shutout.”

The Bulldogs also struggled moving the ball on the ground, collecting only 61 yards on 34 totes, while signal-caller Chandler Shell connected on five-of-12 aerials for 97 yards with one interception.

“We’ve been trying hard all season to find a solution to putting points on the board, but we took a few steps back tonight,” remarked Trinity coach Brett Andrews.

“While I thought our skill guys and the defense played well,” Andrews said, “we hurt ourselves with too many penalties and missed assignments. We have a young team that’s trying to regroup after losing 23 seniors off last year’s squad.”

A scoreless first half proved frustrating for both clubs, as each was able to pick up first downs between the 30-yard lines before stalling out time and again.

The Bulldogs finally got a huge break with 2:19 left in the second quarter when middle linebacker Noah Allen recovered a Thompson fumble at the J-M nine.

Three plays later Brandon Wagner ran three yards up the middle for an apparent touchdown, but the score was disallowed as Trinity was cited for an illegal shift, placing the pigskin back to the eight.

After the visitors from Randolph County eventually turned the ball over on downs at the four, Jordan-Matthews nearly gave up a safety on the final play of the first half when Rayshawn Alston was tackled in the backfield just inches short of the goal line.

But the Jets would strike quickly at the start of the third period following Jerrell Brooks’ return of the second-half kickoff to the Trinity 47.

On J-M’s first play from scrimmage Ethan Jordan took a handoff from Schwartz, sprinted to his left and dashed untouched down the far sideline the distance to the goal line to give Jordan-Matthews a 6-0 advantage just 21 seconds into the third quarter.

While neither team would threaten the remainder of the period, on the second play of the fourth quarter Thompson fielded a Bulldogs’ punt at the Trinity 38 and returned it to the five.

One snap later Ryan Johnson ran wide right to the corner of the end zone to extend the Jets’ lead to 12-0 with 10:54 remaining in the contest, and following several exchanges of possessions Brooks sealed the victory by intercepting a Shell pass at the J-M five on the game’s final play.

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