By Steve Robinson | October 3, 2015 - 10:45 pm
Posted in Category: Olympia HS, The Normalite, U-High

FootballNORMAL – University High School senior running back Jo Jo Hughes ran for three touchdowns and threw for another as the Pioneers beat Stanford Olympia, 29-14, keeping the Spartans winless against Corn Belt Conference opponents, before a crowd of 800 fans at Hancock Stadium on the Illinois State University campus on Sept. 2.

Hughes got U-High (5-1, 4-1 Corn Belt) on the scoreboard with a 2-yard dash into the end zone for a touchdown at 7:17 in the first quarter. That completed a 10 play 61 yard trek into the end zone for the Pioneers but junior kicker Ryan Poland missed the extra point, handing the Pioneers a 6-0 start.

U-High’s next scoring chance started at their own 39 yard line with Hughes carrying the ball for most of the possession, but Olympia defenders forced three incomplete passes, and sacked sophomore quarterback Doug Holmes once, forcing the Pioneers to consider, and Poland to kick a 46 field goal which split the uprights and put U-High up, 9-0, with 40 seconds left in the opening quarter.

With 6:33 left in the second quarter, Stanford Olympia (1-5, 0-5 Corn Belt) began a march from their own 46 which ended in a punt from U-High’s 38. The punted ball was downed at U-High’s 1-yard line. Two plays later, the Pioneers were flagged by officials for intentional grounding, resulting in a safety for the Spartans. Senior linebacker Levi Nieson was credited with the sack of Holmes, reducing U-High’s lead, 9-2, with 5:55 left in the quarter.

U-High FootballU-High’s next score came from Hughes evaded tacklers for a 40 yard touchdown run with 2:23 left until halftime. That score was followed up by Poland’s extra point, giving U-High a 16-2 lead

Olympia scored on its next possession, as junior running back Nate Robinson rushed past defenders for a touchdown with 47 seconds left in the half, cutting U-High’s lead to 16-8. But freshman kicker Mathew Cooksey missed the extra point, keeping the score in tact going into halftime.

Olympia received the ball to begin the second half, only to turn it over after Cooksey failed to make a 45 yard field goal. U-High got the ball back at their own 20 and marched 80 yards on 12 plays, ending in Holmes pitching the ball to Hughes who, in turn, saw sophomore wide receiver Emanuel Bada open in the end zone and threw to him from 22 yards out for the Pioneers’ next score. It was Hughes’ first-ever pass play.

“I thought I was going to have a run, but the receiver was wide open, so I just threw it,” Hughes said about his firs completion. “It worked out well.” Hughes’ first scoring pass play, followed by Poland’s next extra point, increased U-High’s lead, 23-8, with 4:29 left in the third quarter.

The fourth quarter opened with that score, but Hughes helped U-High add to it again on a 53 yard dash with 4:01 left in the game, topping a 10 play 80 yard drive for what would be the Pioneers’ last score of the night, followed by a botched 2-point try, increasing U-High’s margin to 29-8.

Stanford-Olympia SpartansOlympia would find double digits late in the contest, as senior quarterback Collin Miller would connect with Nieson for a 48 yard touchdown with 3:03 left in the contest, followed by a failed kick by Cooksey.

Holmes was 10-for-19 passing for 145 yards, and one interception. Hughes led all rushers with 30 carries for 205 yards. He can also count one pass completion for a touchdown. For Olympia, Miller was 16-for-28 for 191 yards. Nieson led Olympia’s receivers with five catches garnering 93 yards.

“Olympia split our offensive penetration when the game started and we were having trouble with that. That split of our offensive front line slowed us down a bit,” U-High head coach Mike Troll said. “We figured out how to handle that as the game went on.”

“We struggled with placing players in the right positions tonight,” explained Stanford Olympia head coach Mike Rathbun. “Not containing Hughes was poor tackling on our part. I’m not taking anything away from him when I say that. He ran hard. We didn’t tackle as good as what we should have.” Rathbun also added his team came out stronger in the first quarter during this game than they had previously this season.

This entry was posted on Saturday, October 3rd, 2015 at 10:45 pm and is filed under Olympia HS, The Normalite, U-High. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Responses are currently closed, but you can trackback from your own site.

Comments are closed.