St. Pius X 24, Blessed Trinity 17

St. Pius X regained control of Region 6-AAA Friday night when the No. 9 Golden Lions beat No. 7 Blessed Trinity 24-17 on senior fullback Ryan Braswell’s 1-yard run with 1:21 left.


The Lions (7-2, 4-1 Region 6-AAA) won somewhat like they lost a week earlier at Woodward Academy – with a late, long drive (12 plays, 96 yards), and with the help of turnovers in front of a huge crowd at SPX’s George B. Maloof Stadium. The Titans (7-2, 4-1) held the ball most of the second half, but scored just a field goal after intermission.


“I’m going to say this: we’ve had some big-time drives in the 12 years that we’ve been here, but that might be, ‘The Drive,’ ” said SPX head coach Paul Standard. “Our tailback, Nick Ruffin, almost broke two or three and in retrospect I’m glad he didn’t because it helped us take time off the clock.”


The first play of the game-winning drive was nearly a disaster.


One week after Braswell fumbled into the end zone to trigger what became WA’s winning score with 20 seconds left, SPX quarterback Jack Spear optioned left. When he pitched late in the play, the ball hit Ruffin’s knee and then he inadvertently kicked it forward. He fell on it for a 21-yard gain.


The Lions did not turn the ball over against Blessed Trinity, however, after coughing it up five times against Woodward Academy. Blessed Trinity’s last gasp came moments after Braswell’s score when SPX senior cornerback Michael Sikorski intercepted a long pass by BT quarterback Spencer McManes with 1:05 to go.


Junior wingback Brandon Mitchell swept untouched around the right side for 50 yards to give SPX a 9-0 lead in the first quarter. He finished with 105 yards on five carries. Ruffin added 57 yards on six totes, all but one coming on SPX’s final drive. Braswell was busy in the final three quarters on the way to a 22-carry, 104-yard night.


St. Pius took the opening kickoff and drove well only to have to punt shy of field goal range. That worked out because Thomas O’Leary’s 32-yard kick went out of bounds inside the BT 1-yard line.


SPX senior safety Matt Pearson led a host of tacklers on the Titan’s first play from scrimmage, dropping BT freshman running back Milton Shelton in the end zone for a safety.


McManes pushed the Titans ahead 14-9 by halftime with a 17-yard scoring run and a 73-yard pass to C.J. Brazil, both in the second quarter.


The Lions regained the lead, 16-14, on the third play of the second half when when junior safety Nick Glass returned an interception 39 yards for a score.


McManes completed 5-of-13 passes for 96 yards with two interceptions and a touchdown for Blessed Trinity, and he guided the Titans to a 17-16 lead in setting up Marc Nolan’s 25-yard field goal with 5:37 remaining in the third quarter.


Every play on the game-winning drive would be a running play on a night when the Lions rushed 46 times for 323 yards.


After Cedar Grove’s win over Woodward Academy Friday, a St. Pius win over Decatur next Friday would make the Lions the No. 1 seed in Region 6-AAA. Then, the winner of next Friday’s Cedar Grove-Blessed Trinity game will be No. 2. The loser will be No. 3, and Woodward Academy (7-3, 4-2) will be No. 4 by virtue of losses to Blessed Trinity and Cedar Grove.



Blessed Trinity – 0 14 3  0 — 17

St. Pius X – 9 0 7  8 — 24


SPX – Safety, BT’s Milton Shelton tackled in end zone

SPX – Brandon Mitchell 50 run (Thomas O’Leary kick)

BT – Spencer McManes 17 run (Marc Nolan kick)

BT – C.J. Brazil 73 pass from McManes (Nolan kick)

SPX – Nick Glass 39 interception return (O’Leary kick)

BT – Nolan 25 FG

SPX – Ryan Braswell 1 run (Braswell run)

33 comments Add your comment

Seen a few

November 2nd, 2012
11:29 pm

What an instant classic. Congrats to both programs. Your coaches and players showed class and it was a hard fought battle. One game at a time. Interesting how the chips have fallen with Cedar Grove. Cedar Grove 47 Woodward 14…What a colossal beatdown.. The QB and receivers alone are extremely dangerous. All most teams can do is play keep away from the SEC bound record setting QB for Cedar Grove. I have a feeling that Cedar Grove will give all opponents all they can handle going forward. I predict CG beats BT.

Bad Journalism

November 3rd, 2012
12:31 am

More coverage by the father of a St. Pius football program kid — AJC can’t you find someone unbiased to report on the game? What’s next, election coverage by the head of the DNC?

ST PIUS fan

November 3rd, 2012
2:10 am

@bad Journalism Give me a break.. Pius won I was at the game and everything stated was true including SPX will win the region. The only thing he left out was the fact that BT will have a one and done against Buford in the first round. Good luck . Oh and the AJC does let the leaders of the DNC report. Very Very Liberal

Big Irish Mike

November 3rd, 2012
2:11 am

@Bad Journalism why don’t you apply for the job I am sure it really pays well. There are many fathers and mothers around Atlanta writing stories and taking pictures for the AJC and the neighborhood newspapers. Thats the way papers like the AJC stay in business. This is not the 60’s where there were only 50 games every Friday night. Some of the best hits this writer(Winklejohn) missed was the two Blessed Trinity parents punching each other in the stands at the start of the 2nd quarter over differences in opinions about the way BT was being coached. A real bad example that sets for the kids in the stands. They did not get thrown out because the POLICE also Pius parents let them stay as long as they stayed apart. Now you got a problem with that? Didn’t think so. Put on your big boy pants and deal with your team lost. You have a big game next week time to use all your positive energy for that.

Bad Journalism

November 3rd, 2012
2:27 am

Well,I’m not a BT fan, so why don’t we focus on the real issue — people with a real bias should not write the article, especially if they don’t disclose the bias.

Seen a few

November 3rd, 2012
7:58 am

I read the article again 3 times. I’m sorry I just see facts that were relayed. What is the other side to this story? There are 3 sides to a divorce but a football game?

Max Sizemore

November 3rd, 2012
9:50 am

Matt’s a pro, and has been for over 25 years, I believe. You are fortunate he was covering the game.

Woodward Fan

November 3rd, 2012
10:36 am

Last week this same author wrote about the Pius v Woodward game and added comments in the blog as a moderator that were very pro-Pius. Now I understand why. I suppose @bad journalism is simply making a principled observation about disclosure of bias, and it strikes me as a fair criticism.

BT Parent

November 3rd, 2012
10:47 am

Is the article false? No. Is there a bias? Probably so — I mean, there are really only two sentences in the whole article about anything positive BT did during the game. Reads like an SPX booster summary of the game. Whatever, I don’t expect much from the AJC anyway. Good win, SPX. Great effort, BT.

Jan

November 3rd, 2012
12:07 pm

Let’s put the focus back where it belongs. On the game and the spirit and determination on BOTH sides of the field. Both teams played incredibly well and either team could have won.

kidsballcoach

November 3rd, 2012
12:28 pm

Bad journalism is such a WA supporter that he refuses to deal with facts. Same with his WA rhetoric last week in the face of facts of the game. The stats are the stats BJ.

WOW

November 3rd, 2012
12:31 pm

Woodward Fan, the game was played well and hard by both teams. Hats off to the kids. As far as bias, not sure I read that from this article. Oh yeah, how was the game at Pantherville Stadium. Can you give us an update?

BT Parent

November 3rd, 2012
1:15 pm

This is a direct quote from the article. “When he pitched late in the play, the ball hit Ruffin’s knee and then he kicked it forward. He fell on it for a 21-yard gain”. He makes it sound like a designed play. Option Left, Pitch-Kick on 1, Break!!!

Big Fan

November 3rd, 2012
1:57 pm

BT Parent..”He makes it sound like a designed play”? That’s where you claim bias? Really?
Great competitive games by both teams and coaching staffs. Matt, maybe you should get a consensus of opinion before writing article. Then we could get he news in about a week if all agree on wording of facts.

Hmm

November 3rd, 2012
3:42 pm

Or, maybe someone without a player in the program writes the articles.

not sure what the problem is...

November 3rd, 2012
4:42 pm

I wasn’t at the game. I have no dog in the hunt. I don’t see/read the bias. Matt Wilklejohn is a journalist from the old school. He still squeaks out a living writing sports stories. WA parent was crying last week too. He’ll still be crying next week.

The only way you can read Matt’s description of the fumble for a 21 yard gain is if you don’t know the difference between football and checkers. Oh yea, it’s a BT parent. BT PARENT – Please write your own article about this GREAT GAME and post it here. Seems like the score will still be 24-17. Right? Please be sure to include a blow-by-blow description of the rednecks in the fight!

Full disclosure? Matt’s son doesn’t get much playing time – he’s a sophomore. And a great kid!!!

WA Parent

November 3rd, 2012
9:57 pm

Anybody know the score of the Cedar Grove – Woodward game? Is there still time for a last minute comeback like last week?

Uh

November 4th, 2012
10:27 am

Just curious, did SPX and WA play this season?

Uh

November 4th, 2012
10:30 am

Never mind, just found a nice article explaining that SPX and WA did play and that SPX decided to give the game to WA. Very nice of SPX. Too bad there was no winner, just a loser, according to the fine article.

No Dog

November 4th, 2012
10:36 am

I have no dog in this, my kids go to a public school. This article is totally written from the perspective of St. Pius, as it barely talks about what the BT kids did. Same is true of the article about the SPX game last week. I suppose that it is criticism, the article is not balanced. Nobody has said it is false.

Wow

November 4th, 2012
11:23 am

Uh,WA parent, Did we get a Ceder Grove update…

20-14

November 4th, 2012
11:56 am

Big Fan

November 4th, 2012
12:17 pm

I just read an article about the LSU vs Bama game. He talked about what happened as well. We’ve got to stop this now!

not sure what the problem is...

November 4th, 2012
12:38 pm

I have read most of the game summary articles here on ajc.com. ALL of them are written similar to this one. Slanted from one perspective or another. If you don’t like to tone of the article, simply click the back button and you can read another article. If you think your writing abilities are better than Mr. Winkeljohn’s then apply for the job. I feel certain he’s not gunna miss it. Otherwise, stop crying and shut your mouth. What makes you think the ajc gives two craps what y’all are crying about?

Anybody catch the score of that WA game? I think they were playing Cedar Grove. Could somebody please explain exactly how Coach Standard drew up that 21 yd. fumble play? It’s a damn football game guys. It’s not chinese checkers. How could you be so stupid to think the writer is describing a designed play? Oh yea, you’re from BT. Better be sure to go to Confession today and ask God to forgive you for your stupidity!!

Seen a few

November 4th, 2012
12:48 pm

Just read GPB’s version. By Stephen Black, Ryan Caiafa, Ricky Dimon, Alex Ewalt, Sean Conway, Jay Underwood

They used the same facts but were limited to less space. All of these people need to stop writing until they get approval from all fans. Verne Lundquist, Gary Danielson, Herstreit…all of them.

St. Pius 24, Blessed Trinity 17: St. Pius used a potent ground attack to get past Blessed Trinity in a Region 6-AAA thriller. For visiting Blessed Trinity, Spencer McManes racked up 73 of his 96 total passing yards on one scoring strike to C.J. Brazil. McManes added a touchdown run and the visitors took a 17-16 lead going into the fourth quarter on a Marc Nolan field goal.

St. Pius recorded 323 total rushing yards, 105 from Branden Mitchell and 104 from Ryan Braswell, and no passing yards. The Golden Lions scored the game-winner, a Braswell 1-yard plunge, at the end of a 12-play, 96-yard drive.

20-14

November 4th, 2012
1:27 pm

GPB’s 2 paragraph story is balanced. Funny that it contains as much about the positive efforts of BT’s kids as the longer SPX/AJC story.

Just Saying

November 4th, 2012
3:29 pm

Well regardless SPX wins the Region. First team to win two in a row. Last years was over WA this year it was over BT. Fun to watch all three teams. I feel sorry for anyone who has to play a team from Buford’s region in the first round North Hall will be a sleeper pick for the Dome. WA played a great game against Pius but came out flat against CG. Oh and BT nice video and song. It was cute. Its either BT or WA coming to THE Brickyard to get run off Mt. Vernon Highway. All my North Hall Trojans Please Stand Up! I wanna see those Golden Lions in the Dome.

NoDistrictLinesInDekalb

November 4th, 2012
8:56 pm

I am always up for a good video anyone have the link?

Seen a few

November 4th, 2012
9:03 pm

Believe the coach made em take it down.

Just Saying

November 4th, 2012
9:19 pm

Realist

November 4th, 2012
11:36 pm

SAINT PIUS SUCKS!!! THEY ARE ALL DICKBAGS

kidsballcoach

November 5th, 2012
2:13 am

From the above article: “McManes pushed the Titans ahead 14-9 by halftime with a 17-yard scoring run and a 73-yard pass to C.J. Brazil, both in the second quarter.

McManes completed 5-of-13 passes for 96 yards with two interceptions and a touchdown for Blessed Trinity, and he guided the Titans to a 17-16 lead in setting up Marc Nolan’s 25-yard field goal with 5:37 remaining in the third quarter.”

BTW: BT played a great game and has had a great season but LOST this game so the article is written, as are most sports article: ABOUT THE WIN. Regarding 20-14, WA had little for an journalist to write about except the Score: 1 Punt return and 1 drive culminating in a 39 yd TD Run. If you have under 200 yds total offense what else is to be written?
Realist BITE ME: I heard you could suck the chrome off a trailer hitch: SPX has already beaten your team or your afraid to play SPX!

Huh

November 5th, 2012
10:43 am

What is a d**kbag? — @Realist, do you carry those around in bags wherever you go? Stay classy.