Rockets triumph over Churchill in first round of playoffs


Photo By: Carlos Rosas

On November 10th, 2022, the Judson Rockets (4-6) faced off against the Churchill Chargers(5-5) in the first round of playoffs. 

On the first play of the game, the Chargers came out with a punch by getting an interception on the 35-yard line and running it back to the 20.  However, Judson’s defense was electric, and held a front on the 20-yard line, forcing the Chargers to kick a field goal, and succeeded which made the score 3-0. After the kickoff, Anthony Evans caught a great ball downfield at the 45-yard line to start the drive. The Rockets then drove the ball downfield to the 5-yard line, where Junior Nathaniel Stanley ran the ball in for a touchdown which made the score 6-3 when Senior Adrian Cortes missed the field goal. On the following drive, Seniors Chance Edwards and Johnny Bowens came up with back-to-back sacks for a loss of yardage in the backfield, which forced the Chargers to punt the ball away.  Judson fumbled the ball on the 5-yard line which gave possession back to Churchill. Judson’s defense didn’t let up, shutting down Churchill’s offense in the endzone for a safety, which made the score 8-3. Churchill proceeded to kick off to Junior Michael Avery, who ran the ball back to the Chargers redzone. On four attempts, Judson was unsuccessful to get the first down, so they settled for a field goal which was made by Cortes, making the score 11-3, Judson. 

The second quarter of play was underway, and Judson came out firing. Senior Anthony Evans caught a 20-yard pass from Sophomore Elijah Favela to score a touchdown which made the score 18-3, Judson, with the made field goal by Cortes. On the kickoff, Churchill received the ball at the 25, but on their first play of the series, Senior Johnny Bowens intercepted the ball in the Chargers’ red zone, which led Favela to run the ball in for a 4-yard touchdown, which made the score 25-3, Judson, as Cortes drilled the kick. On a Charger punt, Senior Jeremiah Dunn ran the ball back to Charger territory, which led Favela to fade the ball to Senior Johnathan Johnson from 10 yards out, which made the score 32-3, Judson, which closed out the second quarter. 

As halftime ended, Churchill received the ball, but was unsuccessful on their first drive. As Judson regained possession, the Rockets marched downfield, and Favela threw a great ball to Evans in the endzone for another touchdown. The score jumped to 39-3, Judson, as Cortes made the kick. Churchill showed a little bit of life as they stopped the Rockets on a fourth down drive. 

Going into the fourth quarter, the Rockets held a strong front throughout the game and never backed down. Late into the fourth quarter, Sanders forced a fumble that gave the ball back to Judson. The Rockets were unsuccessful on their scoring drive, which turned the ball back over to Churchill. However, Senior Brian Gude intercepted the ball to end the game. The final score, Judson 39, and Churchill 3. 

The Judson Rockets (5-6) will head to Kelly Reeves Athletic Complex in Austin, Texas, on Friday, November 18th, to take on the Vandegrift Vipers (10-1) for the next round.