ITASCA — The Hubbard Jaguars dominated both sides of the ball, rolling their second win in as many games, defeating the Itasca Wampus Cats, 20-0, Friday night at Patton Field in Itasca.
Hubbard outgained the Wampus Cats by more than a two-to-one margin, 394-192, with the majority of Itasca’s offensive output coming ia scrambles and “hail mary” type passes.
The defense again led the way for the Jaguars, shutting out Itasca one week after allowing only one score against Bartlett in the season opener. Linebackers Landon Blackman, with 8 tackles, and Colton Reid, with 7 tackles, led the way for the Jags defense. Justin Johnson, also with 7 tackles from his safety position, helped provide run support for Hubbard.
“Defense played exceptionally well tonight, and the front kept Itasca in check” said Hubbard head coach Russell Anderson.
The Jaguars held speedy Itasca running back Javonn Reed to only 17 yards on 12 carries on the night.
The defense also forced three turnovers, including interceptions by Tyler Pierce and Joseph Green, to stymie the Wampus Cats and preserve the shutout.
The Hubbard offense was not without its stars either. Quarterback Logan Morris had 158 yards of total offense and a touchdown, while Cooper Martin finished the night with 117 yards on only 14 carries. Defensive headliner Johnson also added two touchdowns for the Jaguars.
Hubbard rolled to 320 yards on the ground behind five running backs with more than 30 yards rushing.
Anderson was quick to give credit to his offensive line of Blackman, Sebastian Olvera, Daniel Torres, Chance Hasse, Cody Green, and Gibson Coleman.
“The offensive line played well,” said Anderson.
The Jaguars scored on their opening possession with Johnson finding the end zone on a 19-yard jet sweep around the right end at the 7:05 mark of the first quarter. Johnson’s run capped off nine consecutive runs to begin the game as the Jaguars moved 70 yards for the score.
Itasca attempted to respond late in the first quarter, moving the ball to the Hubbard 15-yard line on a scramble by Wampus Cat quarterback, Andrew Arellano. But big tackle for an 8-yard loss by Reid on first-down put Itasca in a hole. Reid ended the drive on the first play of the second quarter, recovering a Wampus Cat fumble and returning it 33 yards to preserve the lead.
Hubbard would convert the turnover into points, moving the ball 60 yards on nine plays again with Johnson getting his second score of the night on a short, 2-yard run midway in the second quarter. Martin would get Hubbard in position for the score with a big, 32-yard option run to get the Jaguars into Itasca territory.
Hubbard would add the two-point conversion to take a 14-0 lead into halftime.
The third quarter would be scoreless with the Jag defense stopping Itasca twice on downs as the Wampus Cats trying to get back in the game.
First time was at midfield as Olvera and Torres combined to stop Michael DeLaurie short on a fourth-and-two play. The second one was even bigger as Itasca had moved deep into Hubbard territory. On another fourth-and-two play, Blackmon came up big, holding Javonn Reed to only 1 yard.
On the ensuing possession, Hubbard turned the ball back over to the Wampus Cats, giving Itasca new life in Jaguar territory.
But on third down, Pierce picked-off Arellano at the Hubbard 10-yard line to end the Wampus Cat threat. Arellano would finish the night with only 8 completions in 22 attempts for 109 yards and two interceptions.
Hubbard would again convert the turnover into points as Morris kept the ball for a 12-yard touchdown run to close out the scoring with just under nine minutes to play.
“It was a good team win,” said Anderson.
Looking to start 3-0 for the second year in a row, Hubbard returns to action next week, hosting the Cross Roads Bobcats in the 2019 home opener for the Jaguars.