Cougars’ Cooper Mauls Jags for Six TD in Battle of the Big Cats
When two of the county’s top 4A schools are slated to go head-to-head in week 9, it’s expected to be one of the most compelling and competitive games of the year.
That wasn’t the case this past weekend, as Northwest fell 41-6 to bitter rival Quince Orchard in the cold and the rain at the Black Hole Friday night.
Both teams headed into the matchup with 7-1 records on the season and top-20 state rankings, but the Cougars hadn’t lost to the Jaguars in the regular season since 2013. They most recently beat the Jags in the second round of the playoffs last fall, en route to the Cougars’ second consecutive 4A championship game appearance.
Northwest struggled to contain the Quince Orchard rushing attack all night long, as junior running back Marquez Cooper scored a 25-yard touchdown on Quince Orchard’s opening drive less than four minutes into the game. This would be the first of Cooper’s six rushing touchdowns on the day, which set a new Quince Orchard school record.
The Jaguars tried to respond on offense, but the weather conditions deteriorated as the game continued. A light rain became a hard rain, and a hard rain led to a deluge. The Jags fumbled the ball away just a few plays into their opening drive to give the Cougars possession at the Jaguars’ 33-yard line.
Cooper struck again with a two-yard score to give Quince Orchard a 14-0 lead with just under five minutes to play in the quarter.
Northwest’s offense failed to respond again, as senior quarterback Jack Anders was intercepted by junior cornerback Toddreis Baltimore in Northwest territory, which Cooper quickly turned into a 22-yard score and a 21-0 lead with three minutes left in the quarter.
The teams exchanged punts until the Jaguars found themselves with fourth and goal at the Cougars’ three-yard line with under two minutes to go. The Cougars’ defense made a goal-line stand on the next play to preserve their 21-0 lead heading into halftime.
Quince Orchard forced a Northwest punt to begin the second half, which junior running back Charles Bell returned all the way to the Northwest 29-yard line. Cooper capped off the drive with a four-yard touchdown to make it 28-0 Quince Orchard midway through the third quarter.
The Jaguars went three-and-out on their next drive, while Cooper added his fifth touchdown just moments later on a 55-yard run to give his team a 34-0 advantage.
Northwest finally got some offensive momentum going on its next drive, then got on the board with a 24-yard Anders pass to senior running back Isaiah Bishop with less than a minute left in the third quarter. Northwest’s two-point conversion attempt failed, making the score 34-6.
Cooper got his sixth rushing touchdown midway through the fourth quarter, starting the running clock with the Cougars up 41-6. The Jaguars would punt on their next drive, allowing the Cougars to run out the clock and close out the win.
Northwest closes out its regular season schedule against 2-8 Bethesda-Chevy Chase later this week. The Barons have lost their last five, most recently falling 16-13 to the Whitman Vikings this past Saturday. Game time is scheduled for 6:30 pm on Friday night in Bethesda.
In other Germantown high school football news, Seneca Valley fell to Damascus on Friday night 21-6 in the Hornets Nest in Damascus. The win extended the Damascus winning streak to 51 games, and set a new Maryland record for the longest winning streak in history. It also marked Seneca Valley’s seventh straight loss of the season. The Screamin’ Eagles are experiencing the worst season football season in Seneca Valley’s storied football history. Seneca Valley, now 1-8, will finish the season next Friday with a home game (at Gaithersburg) against the 2-7 Wheaton Knights. The Knights are coming off of a 20-14 victory over Kennedy on Friday night.
Top: Quince Orchard’s Marquez Cooper (15) ran for six touchdowns in Friday night’s victory over the Northwest Jags in Germantown.
Next: Northwest’s senior quarterback Jack Anders (8) battled the Cougars and the driving rain as he dropped back looking for an open man.
Next: Northwest had a hard time containing QO’s Marquez Cooper (15) as he ran for a school-record six rushing touchdowns on Friday night.
Photos by Billy Owens for Germantown Pulse