ST. JOSEPH — The defense finally came alive for Central Catholic High School's football team after giving up a 97-yard touchdown pass in the third quarter.
That's all Max Moews, Sa'mond Davis and the Saints' offense needed Friday night.
Moews threw for 292 yards and five touchdowns, while Davis rushed for 182 yards and two scores as Central Catholic downed St. Joseph Ogden, 59-39, in an Illini Prairie Conference football game.
Central Catholic (3-0, 3-0), rated No. 7 in the Class 3A state poll, fell behind 39-30 when Spartans quarterback Keanen Swanson hit Aiden Meyer in stride for a 97-yard TD pass with 7:36 left in the third quarter. It was Swanson's sixth touchdown pass of the game.
After that, St. Joseph-Ogden (2-1, 2-1) was held in check.
“I changed up our defense,” said Central coach Mike Moews. “We went to a 4-2 and brought a guy underneath. We were just bad fundamentally, I hate to say it. We were turning late and not recognizing routes early.”
The Saints' defense held on the next series before the offense and the running game got going.
Davis scored on a 12-yard run late in the third quarter, cutting the deficit to 39-37. After another defensive stop, the Saints took a 45-39 lead on a 57-yard, seven-play drive capped by Davis' 6-yard run with 9:38 left
Moews' 31-yard TD pass to Austyn Ellison on fourth-and-11 upped the lead to 52-39.
Braden Glowacki completed the scoring by taking a tipped pass and returning it 59 yards. Glowacki added another interception later.
“The character they showed in the second half to come back was great,” said Coach Moews. “We still hurt ourselves with penalties on the offensive side. But we ran the ball well and threw the ball well. It was a total team effort.”
There were 1,029 yards of total offense in the game. The Saints finished with 519 yards, including 288 in the second half, while the Spartans had 510 yards.
Central Catholic held St. Joseph-Ogden's Dwight Colvin, who rushed for 406 yards in the first two games, to 11 yards on 10 carries. So the Spartans turned to Swanson, who completed 19 of 34 attempts for 440 yards.
“I'm firing my defensive back coach, by the way,” said Mike Moews. “That's me.”
Max Moews connected on 12 of 20 attempts for 292 yards. James Morris had five receptions for 171 yards. Morris and Ellison both had two TD catches.
The Spartans led 14-7 after the first quarter before a wild second quarter erupted in which the Saints outscored St. Joseph-Ogden, 23-19.
Central Catholic took a 30-27 lead on Moews' 37-yard TD pass to sophomore Liam Brady with 1:35 left. But the Spartans took it right down the field and scored on the half's final play as Joel Orcutt outjumped a Central defender at the 3 and went into the end zone to complete a 40-yard scoring play.