Going into Friday night's game against, Pat Mahoney's Football squad had managed to avoid a single fumble on the season. Despite putting the ball on the ground five times against the Red Devils, as well as throwing two interceptions, the Spartans used a stifling defense to back a power running attack to grab a 28-0 victory over their cross-town rivals.
Junior RB Marcus Jester capped a dominating opening drive for the Spartans with the first of 3 TDs on the night, a 35 yard scamper.
Chaminade Junior QB Thomas Martin, starting his first high school game at QB after finishing last week's game against Ft. Zumwalt West, had a 40 yard pass play on his first drive, connecting with Junior Grant Byrne, but the De Smet defense held, forcing a punt.
Two De Smet drives later, a Conner Harrison fumble at the Spartans' 35 yard line had the Red Devils in business, but soonafter, a Trey Weaver interception in the endzone gave possession back to the Spartans. And just as soon as they got the ball back, De Smet gave it away on a Marcus Jester fumble inside their 20.
But again, the Spartan defense held, thanks to a third down sack by Junior Defensive End Donnie White. White tallied 2.5 sacks and also forced a fumble on the night. On the ensuing possession, highlighted by 54 yard pass play from Harrison to Weaver, Jester put the ball over the goal line to make it 14-0.
"It’s hard because I know I could do better than that," Jester said of the fumble. "I just had to get back out there, my coach talked to me, had to get my head back in the game , I just got back out there and did what I could."
For Jester, the former fullback pressed into starting duty as a running back earlier this season with an injury to Latif Adams, doing what he could amounted to unofficial tallies of 26 carries for 181 yards and three touchdowns.
But it wasn't until the third quarter, when a connection from Harrison to Chris Klages down the Spartan sideline gave De Smet a 21-0 lead with 8:30 left in the third quarter that it felt like the game was out of reach for the Red Devils.
"They wear you down and I thought we still played pretty well. We made the plays we had to make , we caused some fumbles obviously, we got a couple interceptions so I thought defensively we played well, we just need to get a little better on offense and keep plugging on special teams, Chaminade Head Coach Doug Taylor said, in what was Taylor's final De Smet-Chaminade rivalry game after 16 years at the helm.
Mahoney's task now is to get his 3-1 squad focused on the next opponent, a state ranked Jefferson City program that may had his players attention a week early.
"To turn the ball over 7 times and win a football game’s just unheard of," he said.
Chaminade (1-3) will host another MCC rival in SLUH next Friday.
Donnie White said after the game that he and offensive lineman , would be in Columbia as guests of the University of Missouri program Saturday as the Tigers take on the Arizona State Sun Devils. , but has since continued to receive scholarship offers from top programs around the country.
White, who now has 9 sacks on the season,, and has offers from several programs, including Arkansas, but not MU. He's also attracted interest from Arizona State and said Saturday will be his first chance to meet Sun Devils coaches in person.