"I could see their slot back try to come in from the side and sit in the middle - waiting for the pass - and I just timed it perfectly."
That wasn't the only headache doled out by Bates on Friday.
"I had a big hit on another play," he said. "On this one, I was a little further back; their quarterback threw the ball too high, and I drilled the receiver in the chest. It would have been a first down, but he dropped the ball."
Bates had six tackles and a quarterback hurry, to go along with the pair of bone-rattling hits. His teammate, Herman Fitch, also played well.
"I was quiet on defense in terms of my stats, but I was able to put pressure on the quarterback," said Fitch. "We didn't give him time to throw.
"I actually think I had a better game on offense in the jamboree. I had two catches for 25 yards, both of which went for first downs."
Net week, St. John will attempt to slay yet another large school when 4A Belaire, which went 4-6 last year, pays the Eagles a visit.
"We go into each game knowing that we can win," said Fitch, "and knowing that we will do our best."