Aldie, Va. — Following tough losses against Friendship Collegiate and Centreville in their first two games, the John Champe High School Knights put it all together on September 7 with an impressive 40-6 win over previously undefeated Heritage High School. The Knights – led by the only head coach the program has ever known Jason Dawson – hoped to build on that success when they played host to Broad Run High School on September 13. However, the Spartans had other plans as they held off the Knights, 21-13, in Aldie.
The Knights – sensing that it would be tough sledding trying to run against the Spartan front seven – came out firing. John Champe sophomore quarterback Zack Jackson hit five different receivers on their first two drives, with four of the tosses covering 20 yards or more. The Spartan defense – which had given up only 14 points over their first three games – bent, but would not break, holding the Knights to two field goals by senior kicker Jacob Morrill as the first quarter came to an end.
Stifled on their first two drives, the Spartans put together a long drive to start the second quarter. Broad Run junior quarterback Mitch Griffis found fellow junior Romy Miner on a beautiful back shoulder fade for a 42-yard gain to put the Spartans in the red zone. Griffin followed with a nifty scramble on 3rd-and-7 and found Miner in the corner of the end zone, putting the Spartans ahead 7-6 as the two teams went to the half.
The Spartans extended their lead on an 10-play, 80-yard drive that took up half of the third quarter. Once again faced with a 3rd-and-7, Griffis this time turned to receiver Luke Lindenfeldar, and the explosive senior took the short pass, broke a couple of tackles, and went 25 yards for the score.
Trailing by 8 as the fourth quarter began, John Champe fumbled the ball for their only turnover of the game. Broad Run junior linebacker Chaz Allison caused and recovered the fumble. The Spartans then turned to junior running back Tim Baldwin, who finally found some running room. Given the ball on four straight plays, Baldwin powered in from 13 yards out to put Broad Run up 21-6 with eight minutes left in the game.
John Champe refused to go quietly into the night. Taking advantage of the prevent defense employed by the Spartans, Jackson – who completed 22 passes for 219 yards – marched the Knights down the field, finally finding the end zone with a 6-yard toss to junior receiver Tyler Savage with 62 seconds left.
A well-executed onside kick was snared by Lindenfeldar and the Spartans went into victory formation and celebrated their hard-fought win.
1Q 9:09 JC Jacob Morrill 26-yard field goal
1Q 2:10 JC Jacob Morrill 22-yard field goal
2Q 9:48 BR Mitch Griffis to Romy Miner 7-yard TD pass (Young PAT)
3Q 7:30 BR Mitch Griffis to Luke Lindenfeldar (Young PAT)
4Q 8:25 BR Tim Baldwin 13-yard TD run (Young PAT)
4Q 1:02 JC Zack Jackson to Tyler Savage 6-yard TD pass (Morrill PAT)