It has been a strange start to the 2018 football season in Montgomery County. Instead of Friday Night Lights, we been watching Friday Night Lightning and many games have been moved to Saturday in the first two weeks of the season.
While the game times may be strange, the Northwest Jaguars winning ways are very familiar. After scoring 35 points in a home victory over Wootton last week, the Jags scored 34 on the road to defeat Walter Johnson 34-7 in Bethesda on Saturday afternoon. The game was rescheduled to the second straight week of Friday Night Lightning.
Perhaps is it was the later than expected start or the afternoon rain shower which blew through, but the Jags started slowly against the Wildcats, who were coming off a 42-26 opening game victory over Poolesville last week.
After a scoreless first quarter, the Jags got on the board with a 78-yard touchdown run by senior A.J. Woods early in the second quarter. The Jags would miss the extra point. Woods’ run came a few plays after a 75-yard touchdown run by junior Ajahni Terry was called back on a holding penalty. Last week Terry scored three touchdowns. This week, Terry found the endzone twice (not including the one that was called back). He has five touchdowns in just two games.
The Jags took a 6-0 lead into halftime.
During halftime, a scary scene took place as Walter Johnson assistant coach Larry Hurd, Sr. — the father of Head Coach Larry Hurd, Jr. had a medical emergency as the teams were leaving the field at the half. Coach Hurd, Sr. was taken away by ambulance. Coach Hurd, Sr. served as Northwest’s coaching staff last season as defensive coordinator. After the game, Coach Larry Hurd, Jr. Tweeted that, “[Coach Hurd, Sr.] is currently undergoing tests but is stable. Thank you to everyone for the messages and prayers.” Coach Hurd, Jr. remained to coach the Wildcats in the second half.
Once the teams were back on the field, the Jags went back to business as senior running back would shake a would-be tackler and scamper 43 yards around the outside and down the sideline to extend the lead to 12-0. The Jags would line up for point-after-attempt but fake the kick and junior running back Isiah Williams would score a two-point conversion to make the score 14-0.
The Wildcats would get some life after a long kick return by sophomore Ian Griffin who rambled down to the Northwest 25 yard-line. However, the Wildcats drive would go backward and would be forced to punt.
The Jags would drive the ball down to the Wildcat 10-yard-line thanks to a pass from senior quarterback Jordan Morse to Isiah Williams, who ran the ball down to the Wildcat 20-yard-line. Morse would find senior receiver Andrew Howard for a ten-yard gain, but big Ajahni Terry would pound the 10-yards into the endzone for the first of his two touchdowns on the afternoon to extend the lead to 21-0 with 4:22 left in the third quarter.
The Northwest defense didn’t let the Wildcats get any offensive momentum. Walter Johnson’s junior quarterback Josh Forburger was under pressure all afternoon as the Jags recorded four sacks, and broke up at least three passes.
The Terry and the Jags would be in the enzone again after a drive which included three passes and few runs. The drive was capped off with a two-yard touchdown run by Terry to make the score 28-0 with 10:46 to play in the game.
The Jags would end the Jags scoring when Jordan Morse would find Isiah Williams open in the corner of the endzone to extend the lead to 34-7.
The Wildcats would score in the waning minutes as their sophomore running back Ian Griffin carried the ball on all six plays of a drive which ended in a seven-yard touchdown run to prevent the shutout.
Weather permitting, next week the Jags will “host” cross-town rivals Seneca Valley in the annual Battle of Germantown — the King’s Trophy Game.
Seneca Valley is 1-1 after a 19-12 loss to Gaithersburg on Saturday evening,
Next week’s game is technically a Seneca Valley home game but it will be played at Northwest to avoid the awkward situation of two teams from Germantown having to commute to Gaithersburg to play each other. However, there is a good chance that weather will impact this game as Hurricane Florence could be blowing through the mid-Atlantic region late next week.
Top: Northwest’s Ajanhi Terry (5) pounds his way into the endzone for his second touchdown of the game on Saturday against Walter Johnson High School in Bethesda.
Next: Northwest defender A.J. Woods (1) breaks up a pass in the endzone on Saturday afternoon.
Next: Jags’ running back Roderick James (4) breaks multiple tackles after a catch in the third quarter of Saturday’s victory.
Next: Northwest wideout junior Isiah Williams catches a touchdown pass late in the fourth quarter to extend the lead to 34-0.
Next: Ajanhi Terry (5) runs away from Walter Johnson defenders. He has scored five touchdowns in two games this season.
Photos by Germantown Pulse.
NOTE: An earlier version of this story incorrectly identified Ajanhi Terry as a senior, he is a junior at Northwest High School. It has been corrected in the copy.