ST. JOSEPH, Mo. – After a sluggish start, St. Joseph Bishop LeBlond came storming back to beat Van Horn 44-27 after a 90-minute lighting delay at halftime Friday night at Eagle Stadium.
The Falcons (1-1) took a 14-0 lead in the first quarter behind touchdown runs of 75 and 20 yards by J.J. Rivers, who ran for 225 yards on 25 carries.
The Golden Eagles’ (2-0) 42-point run started with 4 seconds to play in the first quarter when senior running back Alex Pyatt returned a kickoff 89 yards to make it 14-7 after the PAT by senior T.L. Romesburg.
Van Horn gave the ball back on its next play from scrimmage as LeBlond senior Cort Patrick stepped in front of a pass by Falcons quarterback Samila Sua and returned it to the Van Horn 22-yard line.
Patrick hauled in a touchdown pass by Jack Schanze on the very next play, the first of four touchdown passes in as many throws for the senior quarterback.
The Falcons turned the ball over again on their next possession, this time on a fumble by Rivers.
Schanze hit Trey Hartman for a 10-yard score, then followed that with another 45-yard strike to Patrick following a three-and-out by the Van Horn offense. Two failed PATs made it 25-14 in favor of the Eagles, who scored four touchdowns in less than five minutes.
Another three-and-out led to a 7-play drive that resulted in a 24-yard Romesburg field goal.
LeBlond rounded out the first half with a 46-yard touchdown on a screen pass from Schanze to Patrick.
Schanze finished 16 of 24 for 242 yards, five touchdowns and one interception, and Patrick hauled in six catches for 141 yards and three scores.
The second half started out smoothly as Schanze marched the Eagles 60 yards, capping the drive with a 5-yard pass to Quinten Obermier.
Things went south after that however, as Schanze saw both a fumble and an interception taken back for touchdowns, by Demerick Fruean and John Fenton respectively. The two scores pulled the Falcons within 15 at 42-27.
Van Horn then blocked a punt with 9:30 remaining and drove inside the LeBlond 20 before two huge sacks – the second by Connor Haynes on fourth down – gave the ball back to the Eagles.
A 25-yard first by Pyatt made it 48-27 with 55 seconds left, effectively ending the game.
The running back finished with 141 yards on 25 carries and two scores, the first on the big kickoff return.