Judge rallies past Ryan

Father Judge receiver Marquis Seamon hangs onto a 28-yard pass for a second-quarter touchdown, despite the efforts of Ryan's Jason Dones. RON TARVER / Staff Photographer
Father Judge receiver Marquis Seamon hangs onto a 28-yard pass for a second-quarter touchdown, despite the efforts of Ryan's Jason Dones. RON TARVER / Staff Photographer
Posted: October 14, 2013

Major disappointment was bearing down on mammoth lineman Eric Drains and Father Judge for the second consecutive week.

But a momentum-shifting interception, followed by two late scores, paved the way for a 28-17 triumph over Northeast Philly neighbor Archbishop Ryan in a Catholic League Class AAAA showdown Saturday afternoon.

"We really needed this," said Drains, a senior two-way tackle. "It was pretty much a must-win situation for both teams. To finish on top, it's big."

In fighting past the slumping Raiders at Charlie Martin Memorial Stadium, host Judge rebounded from a gut-wrenching, 17-16 loss to La Salle a week earlier. In that one, the Crusaders squandered a 16-0 lead.

"We really didn't dwell on it," the 6-foot-4, 272-pound Drains said. "It was all about focusing on Ryan when we returned to practice. The coaches made sure we did that."

Early in the fourth quarter, Ryan was ahead by 17-14 and driving toward a possible clinching touchdown.

That's when safety Yeedee Thaenrat picked off a pass at the Judge 9 and returned the ball 31 yards, setting the stage for Zach Carroll's deciding 1-yard keeper.

"I started jumping up and down after Yeedee made that play," Drains said. "I was so happy."

Thaenrat added a 42-yard touchdown run with less than two minutes left to seal matters. The sophomore, who carried 19 times for 134 yards, bounced to the right sideline and beat the Raiders' last defender at the 29.

Thaenrat and backfield partner Marquis Seamon, who caught a 28-yard TD pass from Carroll in the second quarter, form a solid one-two rushing punch.

"Both of them are capable of making big plays," said Drains, also a heavyweight wrestler. "You can't sleep on either of them. If you do, they'll burn you."

Drains, who transferred to Judge from Furness before his junior year, turned in a solid performance on both sides of the ball. On defense, he was involved in seven stops, including a third-quarter sack.

"He's a beast," said Crusaders coach Mike McKay, whose squad improved to 5-2 overall and 1-1 in Catholic League action. "We've been using him both ways because we have a couple of injuries."

End Matt Cunningham had three of Judge's six sacks. Thaenrat, end Jowell Agyedu, and linebacker Joe Nigro (seven tackles) also made key contributions. Safety Steve Brooks returned a first-quarter pick 85 yards for a score.

For Ryan (4-3, 0-3), tailback Samir Bullock, who spent his first two years at Judge, carried 20 times for 105 yards. In the first half, Mark Ostaszewski hit Bobby Romano for a 68-yard TD and scored on a 1-yard sneak.

Archbishop Ryan 7 7 3 0 – 17

Father Judge 7 7 0 14 – 28

AR: Bobby Romano 68 pass from Mark Ostaszewski (Joe Stock kick)

FJ: Steve Brooks 85 interception return (Connor Foley kick)

FJ: Marquis Seamon 28 pass from Zach Carroll (Foley kick)

AR: Ostaszewski 1 run (Stock kick)

AR: FG Stock 25

FJ: Carroll 1 run (Foley kick)

FJ: Yeedee Thaenrat 42 run (Foley kick)


robrien@phillynews.com

@ozoneinq

www.inquirer.com/ozone

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