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The Northridge Jaguars (3-2, 2-1) defeated the American Christian Academy Patriots (4-2, 3-0) in a cross-town showdown on Friday night. 

American Christian Academy came out strong on both sides of the ball; first, forcing a three-and-out to get the ball, then a two-snap drive, capped off by an 85-yard touchdown run by wide receiver Davis Dare to put the Patriots on the board first. 

Northridge returned the score, driving 66 yards down the field and scoring on a two-yard touchdown run by quarterback Rowdy Christensen. 

The Jaguars defense held the Patriots to two punts on its next two drives, however the Patriots special teams kept its group in the game. Punter Chance Henderson delivered a 43-yard kick with help from defensive back Ben Morris, who downed the ball at the one-yard line.

Offensive miscues hurt the Jaguars opportunity of going down the field. An incompletion, a ball through the hands of running back Kollyn Shelnutt, and a delay of game penalty forced Northridge to punt out of its end zone and give American Christian Academy great field positioning. 

The Patriots capitalized on the Northridge mistakes and scored in two plays, including a 19-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Eric Hines to put the Patriots up by two scores.

Northridge had a chance to tie up the ballgame going into the break after recovering an American Christian Academy fumble in Patriots territory, but Christensen got picked off on the two-yard line by Dare with less than a minute remaining in the half to prevent a score. 

“I told them at half, you can’t panic. Because, like in life, anytime you panic, you get pretty bad results,” said Northridge head coach Ryan Lolley. 

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The Jaguars came out of halftime explosive on both sides of the ball. On the opening drive of the third quarter, the Northridge defense held American Christian Academy to a three-and-out, totaling negative five yards on the drive. 

Northridge went 88 yards down the field and scored on a 40-yard run by running back T.J. Banks. 

The Jaguars scored on all five of its second-half possessions, including two rushing touchdowns by running back P.J. Hall, a four-yard run and a three-yard run, a 40-yard run by running back Toryion Spears, and a 38-yard score by running back Tyler McNeal.

The Patriots scored two more touchdowns late in the fourth quarter, an eight-yard pass to Henderson and a three-yard rush by running back Kolby Preskitt but it was not enough to pull off a comeback. 

“Oh man, I'm proud of the way our boys fought. They played hard at the very end. I mean Northridge is a great school so I mean, it is what it is. I felt like we did great. You know, just the outcome wasn’t what we wanted and I'm proud of the boys for fighting,” said American Christian Academy head coach Cody Martin. 

Next week, American Christian Academy travels to Dallas County (1-4, 1-2) and Northridge hosts McAdory (4-1, 3-0). Both kickoffs are set for 7 p.m. CST.


Northridge beats ACA 42-28

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