WEST MIFFLIN, Pa. — After a slow start, traditional WPIAL Class 4A powerhouse Thomas Jefferson (2-1) got things together and routed West Mifflin, 38-0, on Friday night.
The score was 0-0 at the end of the first quarter and Thomas Jefferson led 10-0 at halftime. Everything just unraveled for West Mifflin (0-3) in the second half, as they couldn’t move the ball or contain the Jaguars’ passing or rushing attack.
West Mifflin’s offense has struggled mightily this season, as the Titans managed to score just 14 points in their first three games. In total, they have been out-scored 128-14. After a season-opening loss to Millville (N.J.), Thomas Jefferson has bounced back to win its last two games.
On the third play of Thomas Jefferson’s opening drive, Brody Evans got picked off and West Mifflin took over from the Jaguars’ 30-yard line. Three penalties backed the Titans up to the 48-yard line, and they ended up turning the ball over on downs. Quarterback Tayshaun McMillan scrambled to the outside and came up just short of the line to gain.
On the following possession, Thomas Jefferson got the ball down to West Mifflin’s 36-yard line, but the drive stalled and Evans’ pass intended for Sean Sullivan fell incomplete on fourth-and-5, resulting in a turnover on downs.
After trading possessions, Thomas Jefferson’s forced a fumble and took over at West Mifflin’s 20-yard line. The Jaguars mustered just 11 yards of offense off the turnover and settled for a 26-yard field goal by Andrew Graham to give Thomas Jefferson a 3-0 lead with 6:28 remaining in the first half.
Following a forced three-and-out by the Jaguars, Evans led the offense down the field and capped the drive with a 33-yard touchdown pass to Jason Salman to give Thomas Jefferson a 10-0 advantage. On the play, Evans looked off the safety and Salman was left wide open.
Wisconsin commit Jordan Mayer sacked McMillan for a 9-yard loss, which forced third-and-24 for West Mifflin. McMillan scrambled to his left and completed to Ty’Jeir Williams for first down yardage on the third-and-long. The drive didn’t result in any points, however, as the Jaguars picked up two more sacks and West Mifflin went into halftime down 10-0.
West Mifflin had a promising opening drive in the second half, but it was derailed after two consecutive delay of game penalties, and McMillan did a pooch punt on fourth-and-20 from the Jaguars’ 43-yard line.
A few plays later, Evans connected to Salman for a 63-yard touchdown to give Thomas Jefferson a 17-0 lead. It was Evans’ second touchdown pass to Salman on the night.
Thomas Jefferson started to just take over upfront, as Aidan Whalen exploded up the middle for a 29-yard touchdown run to give the Jaguars a commanding 24-0 lead late in the third quarter.
The Jaguars enhanced their lead to 31-0 after a 36-yard touchdown pass from Evans to Sullivan. On the play, Sullivan executed an out-and-up route and was left wide open.
On the ensuing drive, McMillan got picked off by defensive end John Janusek, who returned it for a touchdown to conclude a dominating victory.