The beginning of the Mike LoParo era with the Hilliard Bradley High School football team was a rousing success as the Jaguars posted a convincing 39-10 victory against visiting Dublin Scioto on Friday, Aug. 26.
The Jaguars overcame a 10-0 first-quarter deficit, rattling off 39 unanswered points to deliver the first-year coach a victory in his first game.
"It's exciting," LoParo said. "We could see it during the pregame. The kids had the jitters. There are a lot of new kids on the field that don't have any varsity experience. They took a huge step today and now we have to continue to get better."
The outcome didn't appear to have such a rosy glow from the outset, as the Irish appeared poised to ruin the festivities.
Scioto churned out an impressive 10-play, 76-yard drive on the game's opening possession, capped by William Houston's bruising 2-yard touchdown run. Houston led the Irish with 63 yards.
Ryan Duncan kicked a 45-yard field goal, pushing the lead to 10-0 with 1:37 remaining in the first quarter.
Bradley awoke during the second quarter and finally lit up the scoreboard when quarterback Conor Driscoll connected with Jakob Welch for a 16-yard scoring strike.
The Jaguars seized the lead for good when Driscoll lobbed his second touchdown pass, a 25-yarder to Eric Bridgett, to give the Jaguars a 14-10 lead with 38 seconds remaining in the half.
Bradley took to the ground in the second half, scoring rushing touchdowns on their first three possessions of the second half. Terell Stanford scored from 12 and 47 yards, and Blake Scipio added a 6-yard score. Scipio finished with 167 yards on 24 carries, and Stanford added 79 yards.
"We try to spread it out," LoParo said of the offensive attack. "I think with the new style of option we are running, I don't want to be so predictable. We have some kids that can run, so let's let them do that."
SCIOTO 10 0 0 0 -- 10
BRADLEY 0 14 22 3 -- 39
DS--Houston 2 run (Duncan kick)
DS--Duncan 45 FG
HB--Welch 16 pass from Driscoll (Gates kick)
HB--Bridgett 25 pass from Driscoll (Gates kick)
HB--Stanford 12 run (Reffitt pass from Driscoll)
HB--Stanford 47 run (Gates kick)
HB--Scipio 6 run (Gates kick)
HB--Sheffield 33 FG