A close game in the fourth quarter ended the way the St. Joseph-Ogden High School football team wanted last Friday night.
With a win for the Spartans.
SJO overcame host Rantoul with a strong fourth quarter to post a 22-8 win and remain unbeaten on the season.
The Spartans (2-0) will look to keep their perfect start intact at 7 p.m. this Friday when they host Bloomington Central Catholic (0-2) in an Illini Prairie Conference game.
Senior Jarrett Stevenson rushed for a game-high 99 yards on 19 carries, his second straight game pacing the Spartans on the ground, but sophomore Coby Miller, senior Brayden Weaver and senior Jaden Miller each scored a touchdown for SJO. Coby Miller gave SJO its first lead of the game by scoring on a 15-yard touchdown run in the second quarter, with Stevenson’s subsequent two-point conversion run putting SJO ahead 8-0.
The score remained that way until the fourth quarter when the host Eagles tied the game at 8 on a 29-yard touchdown run by quarterback Keddrick Terhune and successful two-point conversion with 11:51 left in the fourth.
But from there, SJO went to work to avoid its first loss of the season. Weaver scored on a 5-yard touchdown run before running in the two-point conversion to give the Spartans a 16-8 lead with 8:30 remaining in the fourth quarter before Jaden Miller recovered a blocked punt and returned it 4 yards for a touchdown with 5:47 left in the fourth quarter to cap the scoring.
SJO junior quarterback Crayton Burnett also chipped in during the passing game by going 4 of 10 for 40 yards, with senior Chance Izard hauling in two receptions for 15 yards. Coby Miller (15 yards) and freshman Ty Pence (10 yards) each added a catch. While SJO only managed to accumulate 215 yards of total offense, the Spartans limited Rantoul to 173 yards of total offense and intercepted two passes by the Eagles.