On Nov. 18, St. John’s varsity football team defeated Gonzaga 30-7 to win the 2017 WCAC championship! They finish the season having gone undefeated in the WCAC for the first time since 1976 and having won the school’s first football conference championship since 1989.This year’s team is also the only St. John’s football team to ever defeat both DeMatha (first win since 1994) and Gonzaga twice in the same season.
This season, the team had the second-hardest-ranked schedule in America, according to USA Today, and they are currently ranked #17 in the national USA Today Top 25. The Cadets had solid performances against four Top 25 nationally ranked teams (USA Today) and defeated five opponents ranked in the Top 2o by The Washington Post, which currently ranks St. John’s at #2. This has been a truly memorable season that will be remembered as one of the best football seasons ever for St. John’s College High School.
The offense has averaged over 35 points per game with a stellar quarterback effort by Michigan commit Kevin Doyle ’18 all season, who rarely throws interceptions and outplayed a Rivals.com three-star rating. His comfort inside the pocket, combined with his ability to make plays off schedule, has made Doyle difficult to stop. Wide receivers like Rakim Jarrett ’20 and Charles Briscoe ’18 have also made a habit of creating separation in downfield routes and winning jump balls.
Passing is great, but a steady run game is also important. Junior running backs Keilan Robinson and Ron Cook have been explosive weapons. Robinson averaged an impressive 6.2 yards per carry, and Cook had seven rushing touchdowns in regular season play. In addition, Antwain Littleton ’21 wears the number 35 like a young Christian Okoye, and the 265-pound back is a linebacker’s nightmare to tackle. The well-rounded committee has done a great job as a complement to the passing game.
Defense wins championships, and that’s how St. John’s has done it. Opposing quarterbacks have struggled to throw the ball against the Cadets, and the pass rush has been a huge part of that. Virginia Tech-commit Cam Goode ’18 has been great in the trenches, along with defensive ends Treymon Morris-Brash ’19 and Caleb Okechukwu ’18. The inside linebackers do a great job of filling gaps and closing rushing lanes. Sam Serrano ’18 has been a solid tackler and snatched a pair of interceptions against Archbishop Carroll. The secondary play has been nearly flawless, and opposing quarterbacks are forced to check the ball down because of safety and cornerback play.
The Cadets’ phenomenal win against Gonzaga was a result of excellent team play all season and at every level. Go Cadets!