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EJ Lee’s Six TDs Propel Northwest Back to State Championship Game


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By Kevin O’Rourke

Someone watching the Northwest Jaguars for the first time might have walked away from Friday night’s 47-12 victory over the DuVal High School Tigers with the misconception that Northwest was a one-dimensional team. And that one-dimension was E.J. Lee.

And you couldn’t blame them.

E.J. Lee’s six touchdown performance in the 4A State Semi-Finals was a thing of beauty. He caught three touchdowns. He ran one in from 85-yards out. He ran another one in from 41-yards out. And he scored on a 75-yard punt return.

If you were to listen to Northwest Head Coach Mike Neubeiser gush about his running back after the game, it might further support the misconception that Northwest was one dimensional.

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“It was his best game,” said Neubeiser. “It was a special night for him. Earlier this week at practice, Mike Cornejo, an alumni and founder of MoCoFootball.com, came by practice to talk to the kids. He singled out E.J. saying he was the toughest player to ever play for Northwest. And, I think he is 100 percent accurate. That kid is just an animal. He’s a tough kid. He plays with so much heart.”

However, when you talk to the players on this team, the idea of Northwest being one dimensional begins to crumble. And it is E.J. Lee who is the first to begin to disabuse you of that notion.

“The guys on the offensive line were special tonight,” said Lee when asked his six score night. “They were able to make the key blocks. They were able to see second level. They just guided me to the end-zone.” He also credited that punt return team for his 70-yard touchdown return. “The guys were able to get some good blocks.”

The Northwest offensive line is made up of senior center is Austin Wickham, guards senior Maxwell Hughes and junior Tariq Manna, and the tackles are sophomore Cole Cheripko and senior T.J. Patterson.