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Crusaders ousts defending champs from playoffs with 28-0 triumph

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  • Feature Story
  • Game Recap
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  • NCL Staff
  • Posted:
  • November 20, 2016 - 6:51pm

File photosMark Bonis' Brother Martin Crusaders knocked off defending champion Catholic of Baton Rouge by blanking the Bears 28-0 in the Division I quarterfinals on Friday.

Brother Martin won the rubber match of a series of three years worth of playoff encounters with Catholic of Baton Rouge while also denying the Bears a shot of repeating as state champions with a 28-0 win over previously unbeaten Catholic in the Division I quarterfinals Friday in Baton Rouge.

The Crusaders, the No. 6 seed, will return to the Baton Rouge area to take on Scotlandville in the semifinals. Scotlandville, the No. 2 seed, advanced with a 20-7 win over St. Augustine, the No. 7 seed. Catholic High, the No. 3 seed, ended its season 10-1.

Brother Martin, now 9-3, avenged last year’s 49-48 quarterfinal loss to Catholic High. The Crusaders won the 2014 playoff encounter 25-23.

The Crusaders defeated Catholic, in part, by dominating the time of possession. Brother Martin held onto the football for a total of 32:26 in the contest.

Hampering Catholic High was the loss of running back Clyde Edwards-Halaire. The LSU commitment left the game in the first quarter with an injury. Without Edwards-Halaire as a backfield threat, the Crusaders were able to pressure Zack Crawford the entire game. The Bears quarterback was sacked five times.

Catholic High was limited to 174 yards of total offense, including 14 rushing. By contrast, Brother Martin amassed 375 total yards.

Brother Martin running back Bruce Jordan-Swilling, who topped 200 yards rushing in the game, staked the Crusaders to an early lead with a short touchdown to cap a 79-yard drive on his team’s first possession of the game.

Jordan-Swilling, a Georgia Tech commitment, added another touchdown run to give Brother Martin a 14-0 halftime lead.

Any thought of a rally by the Bears ended then Jordan-Swilling raced 49 yards for a touchdown on the opening possession of the second half.

Brother Martin quarterback John-Paul Pierce scored on a 5-yard run late in the third quarter for the 28-0 final.

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