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Jags Retain Kings of Germantown Title For Another Year

The annual Battle for the Kings’ Trophy rivalry game between the Seneca Valley Screaming Eagles and Northwest Jaguars has historically been the biggest football event in Germantown since Northwest’s first season in 1998.

Last night’s edition saw Northwest retake the trophy for the second consecutive year with a comprehensive 35-0 victory over Seneca Valley.

Seneca Valley was the designated home team, but the game was played at Northwest to keep such a big game in Germantown on a Friday night rather than at Gaithersburg the following morning.

“There’s a lot of pride in winning that, there’s a lot of tradition, [and] it goes back all the way to when we opened in [1998],” Northwest Head Coach Mike Neubeiser said. “I think it means a lot to the kids, and bragging rights for the year is a big deal.”

Less than two minutes into the first quarter, the Jags scored their first touchdown before their offense stepped foot on the field as senior A.J. Woods blocked the Screaming Eagles’ first punt and returned it to the end zone.

“He blocked the punt with the man that was blocking him, then picked it up and scored a touchdown all in one play,” Neubeiser said. “When you get your best athletes to buy in on special teams, it makes a big difference.”

Seneca Valley’s offense was spinning its wheels in the muddy grass all evening long, as several big runs by senior running back Prince Rush and sophomore running back Alex Holmes routinely fell short of the goal line. The offense was never able to capitalize on multiple scoring opportunities, while Northwest’s defense held tough until the final whistle.

“Everyone carried out their assignments, and they were in the right place where they needed to be,” Neubeiser said. “We’re starting to gel a little bit and understand the team concept a little better defensively.”

The Jags struck again before the end of the first quarter, as senior quarterback Jack Anders found tight end DeAndre Jules for a seven-yard touchdown pass.