Bonner-Prendergast senior Kyrin Jackson knew what it felt like to win, but the feeling had eluded him so far this season.
On Saturday, however, Jackson had enough.
His 4-catch, 136-yard, 3-touchdown performance against upstart Bishop McDevitt earned him my latest City Player of the Week award (Catholic, Public and Inter-Ac Leagues).
Far more importantly, the 6-foot-1, 180-pound receiver and defensive back also helped the Friars (1-5) earn their first win.
“It was kind of frustrating,” Jackson said. “Things just weren’t going as planned. We just didn’t combine as a team. We were just all over the place.”
Friars second-year coach Jack Muldoon has only six seniors at his disposal, and at times, seven of his 11 players on the field have been sophomores.
“I was so happy for the kids,” Muldoon said. “As a coach, you tell them, ‘Work hard and good things will happen,’ and after a while, they look at you like, ‘Are they really gonna happen?’ ”
As a freshman, Jackson had an interception on the Friars’ 2014 team that finished 8-2, according to TedSilary.com. Last season, the Friars finished 4-7 and lost to rival Cardinal O’Hara in the Catholic League 4A finale.
McDevitt also struggled last season, losing its last five contests before starting this season 4-0.
“We came out with a lot of energy and intensity,” Jackson said. “That’s what we needed in practice, and that’s what we needed in games.”
Muldoon said colleges such as Villanova and Monmouth have showed varying degrees of interest in Jackson, who has 18 catches, 348 yards, four receiving touchdowns and a rushing touchdown this season.
When asked to describe his style of play, Jackson smiled.
“I’m a dog when it comes to wide receiver,” he said. “I can shake you. I can stiff-arm you, go through you. I just do anything to get open.”
And once he’s open, “it’s just off to the races,” he said, laughing.
One of his more memorable plays Saturday at Cheltenham High, where McDevitt plays some of its home games, came late in the fourth quarter with the Friars nursing a 6-point lead.
Muldoon explained that injuries had whittled the Friars down to their third punter. Not wanting to risk disaster deep in their own territory, Muldoon had Jackson line up behind center and waste time before taking a safety.
— Friars Football (@MBAP_Football) October 1, 2017
As a result, Jackson salted away more than 20 seconds with less than a minute remaining, and McDevitt ran out of time on its final drive.
“That day,” Jackson said, “we showed them that we came out here to fight.”
Five more top performances
Archbishop Wood senior Nasir Peoples rushed 12 times for 177 yards and three scores in a blowout win against Archbishop Ryan.
Lansdale Catholic senior Matt Casee rushed 17 times for 106 yards and three touchdowns in the Crusaders’ big win against Conwell-Egan.
Sophomore Trae Vance rushed 20 times for 177 yards and three touchdowns in Germantown Academy’s lopsided win against Pennington.
Frankford junior Jordan Price had 128 yards and a score on 14 carries in the Pioneers’ win against West Philly.
Junior Edward Saydee rushed 33 times for 123 yards and a touchdown in Penn Charter‘s win vs. Lawrenceville.
*Coaches, want to nominate a player? Email firstname.lastname@example.org by the end of Sunday each week with your player’s name, height, weight, grade and stats from that week or why they should be considered. Coaches’ submissions only.*