On Friday, I was at DW Rutledge stadium as the Judson Rockets (10-1, 5-1) hosted the O’Connor Panthers (8-3, 4-1) in the 2nd round of the 2015 playoffs.

I was really thinking of covering Smithson Valley and Stevens because I thought that was the best game on Friday night, but after a very heated debate between me, myself, and I, I decided to cover Judson football. In case your wondering, Smithson Valley crushed Stevens by a score of 35 to 0 on Friday – which I guess wasn’t really a great game.

One of the reasons I chose Judson is I have a lot more Judson followers than Smithson Valley and Stevens and I love interacting with them on social media through-out the game. I even got to meet @AaronFlynn before the game and that is always cool for me to meet people who share my passion for high school football. Aaron even offered to take photos for me at future Judson football games – I am big time! I may have to accept his offer next season.

Another reason is the fact that Judson football was my home away home from 2003 to 2014. So, everything (including the press-box staff) is very familiar to me and that makes my job easy.

These teams played last year also in the 2nd round and Judson defeated O’Connor by a score of 50 to 35. The Panthers did all their damage thru the air with 443 passing yards and 5 touchdowns from the senior quarterback. Johnathan Tapia, a sophomore, had 4 receptions for 44 yards in that game. This year, as a junior, he leads the teams with 560 receiving yards and 8 touchdowns. Jamontae Edwards, the leading rusher for O’Connor, didn’t play in last years game as a junior because he was injured. This year, he leads the team with 936 rushing yards and 6 touchdowns.

Julon Williams, the Judson freshman quarterback, had 179 total yards with 2 touchdowns against O’Connor last year. This year, he has 1,461 passing yards with 14 touchdowns and 581 rushing yards with 10 touchdowns.

The styles of offense for Judson is to run the football with their talented underclassmen running backs and quarterback while O’Connor can burn you thru the air or on the ground with their 2 quarterback system.

Even though I was expecting Judson to win, I wasn’t sure of it would be a close low scoring game, a blow-out, or a shoot-out like last week as Clemens beat Johnson 54 to 51.

In the 1st half, it was a shoot-out as Judson led 28 21 over the O’Connor Panthers. The Judson sophomore quarterback, Julon Williams, had 7 carries for 86 yards with 2 touchdowns. Clayton Maxwell, the senior quarterback for O’Connor, was 5 of 9 passing for 78 yards with 3 touchdowns – 2 of them were to junior, Johnathan Tapia.

The O’Connor Panthers got the ball 1st to begin the 2nd half and they marched right down the field as Johnathan Tapia caught his 3rd touchdown of the game. That drive for O’Connor took 4:45. The scored was tied at 28. Will a team make a defensive stop or will it be the team with the ball last win? Well, the Judson Rockets got back to back to back defensive stops late in the 3rd and the 4th quarter and took a tied game into a blow-out win.

The Judson Rockers defeated the O’Connor Panthers by a score of 56 to 28. Judson will play Laredo United on Friday at 4 at DW Rutledge stadium – which will be the Rockets 3rd consecutive home game for the playoffs.
Clayton Maxwell, the senior quarterback, for O’Connor was 15 of 26 passing for 190 yards with 4 touchdowns and interception. Jamontae Edwards, the senior running back, for O’Connor had 13 carries for 46 yards –he fell just short of 1,000 rushing yards for the season, but still he had a great career at O’Connor. Johnathan Tapia, the junior wide receiver, for O’Connor had 4 receptions for 63 yards with 3 touchdowns and Roel Sanchez, the sophomore quarterback for O’Connor, had 47 total yards. Bringing back both those players next year will be a huge lift for the O’Connor Panthers as well as the Bradford boys – Millard, a sophomore wide receiver and Brandin, a junior running back. I expect to see O’Connor as one of the top teams next year in District 27-6A.

The Judson Rockets magnificent underclassmen running backs and quarterback, had 578 total combined yards with all 8 touchdowns. Julon Williams, the sophomore quarterback, had 13 carries for 102 yards with 3 touchdowns and was 16 of 23 passing for 204 yards with 1 touchdown. Julon’s longest touchdown run of the game was for 63 yards and that was on his 2nd carry. Jay Miller, a sophomore, had 12 carries for 54 yards with 1 touchdown; Sincere McCormick, a freshman, had 5 carries for 16 yards with 1 touchdown; and Mi’kel Jackson, a junior, had 16 carries for 202 yards with 2 touchdowns. For the season, Mi’kel has 1,057 rushing yards.

Please like The Statman Speaks on Facebook to view the entire Judson and O’Connor photo album.

Here are a few teaser pics from the game:

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