BETHESDA — In the last game of the season, the visiting Churchill Bulldogs defeated the Walter Johnson Wildcats 35-14, dominating in a largely symbolic game.
Both teams had nothing to lose or gain, as both had their playoff chances dashed coming into Friday night’s matchup. The Bulldogs were fighting to break even and end their season at 5-5, while the Wildcats were aiming to end the season on a high note with their third victory of the season to end 3-7.
But there could only be one winner, and the Bulldogs came out in a resounding fashion against the Wildcats team plagued by quarterback troubles.
“Of course we’ve been spending most of our season without a quarterback. It’s been hard to win games without a quarterback,” said Wildcats head coach Charles Woolridge. “Since we lost Aziz Diomande last week, it’s kind of been a quarterback by committee.”
Bulldogs junior wide receiver Andrew Ha scored the first and only touchdown of the first quarter to put Churchill ahead by six.
Junior quarterback Michael Janis handed it off to junior running back Patrick Richardson for a Bulldogs touchdown in the second quarter and 46 rushing yards. Janis then connected with senior defensive end Andrew Welch for the two-point conversion.
Senior Wildcats cornerback Matthew Stroud, who also doubled as a quarterback in tonight’s game, retaliated with a 43-yard kick return for touchdown. Senior kicker Agustin Cortes followed up with a successful extra point attempt to halve the lead.
“This team, they’re not a typical 2-7 team, they’re a little better than the record shows, and we knew that,” said Janis.
Janis started scoring in the third quarter with a short one-yard walk into the end zone for a touchdown.
Janis then handed it off to senior slotback Isaac Lewis for another one-yard push to the end zone in the last moments of the third quarter for another touchdown, followed by a successful extra point attempt, to enter the final quarter with a 28-7 lead.
A carry by Janis and a successful extra point attempt was the last scoring play by the Bulldogs and, in the waning minutes of the fourth quarter, marked certain victory as they now had five times as many points as the Wildcats.
Stroud had other ideas, and on the Wildcats’ last drive, scored again off of an 83-yard kick return that ended the home team’s last season loss in style. Cortes finished it off with another successful kick, going two-for two.
“Every time you play Walter Johnson it’s always a tough ball game, but I think our guys came out ready to take this win,” said Bulldogs head coach Willie Williams.
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