The Prosper Eagles were defeated 41-14 in a road game Oct. 11 by the Jesuit Rangers.
The Eagles were out-matched from the start, as Jesuit jumped out to an early three-touchdown lead. Turnovers played a large part in this contest as Jesuit was able to create 13 points from the Eagles’ four turnovers.
Another massive difference-maker in the game was third and fourth down conversions. Prosper converted just three of its eight third downs and failed on its lone attempt to move the chains on fourth down. In contrast, Jesuit came through on seven of its 13 third downs and maintained possession on both of its fourth down attempts, which kept their drives alive and wore out Prosper’s defense.
Prosper also had trouble containing Jesuit running backs Jake Taylor and E.J. Smith, who combined for 249 yards and six touchdowns.
Prosper quarterback Jackson Berry threw for 150 yards and two touchdowns, but also threw three interceptions and lost a fumble. He also added 22 yards on the ground.
On the receiving end of Berry’s touchdown passes were Hayden Metcalf and Tyler Bailey. Metcalf had 65 receiving yards to lead the Eagles. Prosper’s leading rusher was JT Lane, who ran for 46 yards.
Prosper’s first drive ended after Berry threw an interception on the second play, giving Jesuit a chance to start its first drive with excellent field position. The Rangers rushed down the field and, on fourth-and-goal at the 1-yard line, punched the ball into the end zone to take a 6-0 lead.
Prosper’s offense stalled in a three-and-out on its next drive, a rare occurrence for the Eagles’ offense, and they were forced to punt. Jesuit received the ball at its 43-yard line and again capitalized on the short field, driving 53 yards in seven plays to widen the lead to 13-0.
The Eagles were held to just a single set of downs again on the next drive, but this time a short punt set Jesuit up within a stone’s throw of the endzone. The Rangers broke off a 32-yard rush that set up a 3-yard power run to further enlarge their lead to 20-0.
On the ensuing drive, Prosper received the ball at its 20-yard line, but a penalty backed the team up another 10 yards. The Eagles’ offense then put together an impressive 10-play, 90-yard scoring drive topped off by a 14-yard pinpoint pass from Berry to Bailey. After Brad Larson converted the extra point, the Eagles found themselves down 20-7 at the end of the first quarter.
A decent kick return and a Prosper personal foul caused Jesuit to start the second quarter with another short field, this time beginning from the 50-yard line. Jesuit profited from the drive starting at midfield once again by marching 50 yards in eight plays to retake a 20-point lead.
Neither team added points to the board before halftime as they struggled to reach the red zone, although Prosper did benefit from a missed 31-yard field goal by Jesuit. The Eagles’ entered halftime down 27-7.
Prosper’s defense came out of the break energized. The team intercepted a pass on Jesuit’s first drive and held the Rangers to just three plays on their following possession.
The Eagles, starting from midfield, set themselves up in the red zone with smash-mouth football. Just four rushing plays were all it took for Prosper to eat up 39 yards of the field and enter the red zone. On the next snap, Metcalf put his defender on a poster by leaping up and hauling in a 12-yard corner fade from Berry in the end zone. Larson converted his second and final extra point attempt of the day, and the Eagles cut the lead to 14-27.
Jesuit wasted no time in its response as the team methodically drove the field, converting on three third downs and a fourth down play. After a 15-yard pass on third-and-12 pushed the Rangers into the red zone, Taylor broke through the Eagles’ defense for 16 yards and a touchdown.
On the first play from scrimmage of the next drive, Berry threw a short pass toward the sideline, which was tipped by his receiver and fell into the opposition’s hands.
Starting from Prosper’s 24-yard line, it took just three plays, including the 15-yard touchdown rush, for Jesuit to put the lid on this game and hand Prosper its first loss of the season.
The Eagles fell to 5-1 on the season after being upset by UIL District 9-6A opponent Jesuit, who started 0-2 but has now won four straight. Prosper will look to right the ship this week at home against McKinney Boyd, the district’s fifth-place team. The Eagles outpace Boyd in just about every stat category. Prosper’s 40.3 points-per-game is significantly higher than Boyd’s 25, and the Eagles’ defense allows only 17.2 points-per-game compared to Boyd’s 26.2.
Game time is set for 7 p.m. Friday at Children’s Health Stadium.