Brophy v. St. Mary's

Broncos outlast Knights in defensive battle



This game has long been known as one of the most highly anticipated games in Arizona and this year's game was not a disappointment. Both teams came into this game with one loss and it is unfortunate that someone had to lose this game that featured tough defense and long drives on offense.


Brophy opened up with the ball and immediately went to their ground attack; running behind their massive o-line with Rahnee Dennard. They reached the 30 yard line, threatening to score but CB Jason Owens picked off Bryan Behrens to thwart the drive. The Brophy D forced a 3-and-out and went on a 9 play drive only to be stopped on 4th and 2.


St. Mary's followed with a long drive off their own, marching 45 yards on 13 plays to the Bronco 20 but Troy Taylor picked off Aaron Verlinde and the defensive battle continued.


Brophy was the 1st to strike when RB Nick Natale scampered 29 yards to paydirt making the score 7-0 after the PAT. Natale rushed for 38 yards on 3 carries on the drive.


St. Mary's wuld then mount a scoring drive of their own on the ensuing possession when Verlinde hit Keaton Kristick for an 18 yard scoring strike with under 2 minutes to go in the half.


Instead of taking a knee and heading into the half tied, Brophy decided to try and move the ball and it ended up hurting them. Behrens was picked off after a flag on the 1st play and Kristick took the Knight's 1st play 46 yards and into scoring territory. RB Josh Felton rattled off a nice 11 yard run to the 13 and Kristick pounded the ball in after 3 more runs. The score at half was 14-7 St Mary's.


The 3rd quarter opened up with both teams exchanging fumbles and neither team able to find the endzone.


The 2nd half scoring kicked off when Brophy tied up the game at 14 when Natale got in from 3 yards out. Natale and Dennard were the workhorses on the drive. The got the bulk of the carries on the 13 play 83 yard drive.


Both teams then went on long time consuming drives that lead to no points for either team and it looked as if the game was headed to overtime. But Bronco DE Rashaad Barnett had other thoughts. He picked off a Verlinde screen pass and raced 16 yards for a score to put Brophy up 21-14 late in the 4th. St. Mary's final drive was squashed when LB Troy Taylor came up with two big tackles-for-loss.


Final Brophy 21  St. Mary's 14





Throw everything out the window when you have a huge rivalry game like this one. If you looked out on the field you would think that Brophy would run away with this game. The Broncos have a huge team both in size and numbers. Their offensive line had to outweigh the St. Mary's DL by at least 50 pounds per man. But St. Mary's is a scrappy team. If they had a better pass game they would be a bigger threat. Brophy stacked the box and asked St. Mary's to throw and they did; they threw 3 picks. It still expect St. Mary's to be a tough draw come playoff time.


Game Balls:


Brophy LB Troy Taylor was all over the field. He had a huge INT early and made tackles sideline to sideline including several nice tackles for a loss near the end of the game.

Brophy DE Rashaad Barnett's INT returned for a TD was the play of the game and proved to be the game winner.

The Brophy O-line paved the way for nice nights for Natale and Dennard. They are a big group that gets after it.

St. Mary's RB/LB Keaton Kristick was arguably the best player on the field. He ran for tough yards up the middle and scored both of the Knight's TDs.

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