First Posted: 9/26/2014
PEMBROKE — It was a night of clutch performances for the Purnell Swett football team on Friday night against North Brunswick.
Thristian Lowry led the Rams offense the length of the field with 1:25 second left in the first half, finishing it with a 34-yard touchdown pass to Josh Brooks with 37 seconds left that gave the Rams a 20-7 lead.
The defense also stepped in the second half to preserve that lead, as Josh Jacobs picked off Tiger Bryant with five minutes left in the game to help Purnell Swett seal a 20-14 win over the Scorpions.
Josh Brooks said the win was proof of how tight the Rams are as a team.
“It just shows how we stick together and fight through adversity,” Brooks said. “You know trouble is going to come, but it is how you fight through it and how you finish the game out. It feels so good.”
Coach Mark Heil said he was proud of how his kids played all game.
“I’m proud of our defense,” he said. “They played very well except for one drive. The blocked punt really let them back into the game. Our kids stood up and bowed their neck and found a way to win and that says a lot.”
Lowry’s touchdown drive would come on the heels of a blocked punt that was returned for a touchdown by Evan Bellamy for North Brunswicks only score of the first half.
North Brunswick held the Rams scoreless in the second half, and Scorpions coach Garry Bishop said he was proud of the way his team scrapped to stay in the game.
“We held it together and fought for four quarters,” Bishop said. “We knew we were the underdog going into the game. We wanted to try to shorten the game and play the best defense we could. I’m just more please with the effort of the guys.”
The Rams struggles in the second half are something Heil said his team has struggled with that all season long.
“We just got stymied on offense again,” he said. “We come out and have a good game plan and we can’t block people and we can’t get wide receivers open.”
The Rams offense was able to put up some good numbers despite being held off the scoreboard in the second half, racking up 396 yards of total offense.
The defense was just as successful for the majority of the game, keeping the Scorpions from getting a first down until the second quarter, and limiting them to 271 yards of offense, most of which came on their third quarter scoring drive, when Deshawn Montgomery ran the ball in from nine yards out for their only offensive score of the game.
Jacobs’ interception was the highlight of the game for the defense, and Heil said he has come to expect plays like that from him.
“I was surprised they threw the ball, but Josh Jacobs is a play maker,” Heil said. “He comes in a line of two other brothers who I have coached seven years in a row and all of them were playmakers.”
“I actually told Thristain ‘Wouldn’t it be nice to come up with a pick or a fumble right here’ and he came up with it,” Brooks said. “Josh is clutch and I couldn’t ask for anything better.”
The Rams started the game out with a nine-minute drive that would net them six points on a five-yard pass from Lowry to Brooks.
On the next possession for Purnell Swett, the running game struck in the form of a 43-yard scramble for a touchdown by sophomore James Devin Hunt to put the Rams up 12-0 late in the second half.
North Brunswick 0 7 7 0 — 14
Purnell Swett 6 14 0 0 — 20
PS — 5 yard touchdown pass to Josh Brooks from Thristian Lowry (2pt conv. no good)
PS — 43 yard touchdown run by James Devin Hunt (2pt conv. no good)
NB — Blocked punt returned for a touchdown by Evin Bellamy (PAT good)
PS — 34 yard touchdown pass to Josh Brooks from Thristian Lowry (2pt conversion good on pass to Brooks from Lowry)
NB — 9 yard touchdown run by Deshawn Montgomery (PAT good)
Rushing: PS — Joshua Jacobs 23-119, Thristian Lowry 15-99, James Devon Hunt 6-80; NB — Jordan Howard 1-65, Deshawn Montgomery 16-63
Passing: PS — Thristian Lowry 10-25-1-96; NB — Shelton Perkins 3-10-0-33, Tiger Bryant 1-2-1-17
Receiving: PS — Josh Brooks 5-68, Garrett Hammonds 2-17; NB — Shaquan Graham 2-25