Football falls to St. Xavier in the playoffs


Manual’s Tavon Johnson (#11, 10) prepares to run his wide receiver route during the regular season game against St. X earlier this year. Photo by Cesca Campisano.

Weston Corak

Last night, the Crimsons (8-4) faced off against the St. Xavier Tigers (11-1). In this game, the St. Xavier Tigers beat the Crimsons 16-18. The Tigers will play next week in this third round.

First half:

In the first quarter, Manual marched down the field, scoring a 9-yard rushing touchdown by Curtis Rearden (#2, 12). The down came after a blocked punt by Manual. The extra point was incomplete, making the lead 6-0 with Manual leading. The rest of the quarter consisted of good defense by both teams, resulting in no further points.

In the second quarter, good defense was played once again by both teams. The Tigers were able to push through and score a 29-yard receiving touchdown. After the score, St. Xavier missed their extra point, which tied up the game 6-6. Later in the quarter, Manual made a field goal by Liam Spurlock (#89, 12), increasing their lead 9-6. St. Xavier later came back this quarter with a field goal increasing the score 9-9 going into halftime.

Second half:

Following tough defense from both teams, Manual scored a touchdown following a 5-yard rush by Darien Wilson (#15, 12). The Crimsons increased their lead 16-9 following the extra point by Liam Spurlock (#89, 12). No further points were scored this quarter, following impressive stops by both teams.

Going into the fourth quarter, the Crimsons and Tigers had very different aspirations. The Crimsons wanted to hold onto the lead, and the Tigers wanted to break through and take it. The Tigers had a 31-yard rushing touchdown to start the quarter. They made their extra point as well in increasing their score to 16, tying the game up. Later on, in the quarter, the Tigers pinned Manual in their end zone resulting in a safety, allowing the Tigers to increase their lead by two, making it 18-16, giving them their first lead. The Tigers did many rushing plays throughout the quarter trying to run the clock down and found themselves in field goal range on fourth down. They decided not to kick it and go for it but ultimately came up short, giving Manual one last shot to win this game and move on in the playoffs. With little time on the clock, the crimsons had to move fast to win this game. St. Xavier’s defense, however, wanted to prevent this as much as they could. St. Xavier got an interception with just a little over a minute left, allowing them to win the game. The final score read 18-16 as the Tigers won.

The St. Xavier Tigers will face off against Male this Friday in the third round of the KHSAA 6A Playoffs.