Tigard, Jesuit to clash in quarterfinal game tonight
You don't really have to say much more.
And, if recent history is any indication, it's quite a battle when the two high school football squads face off.
And, the next chapter in that book of battles is set for tonight.
The Tigers and Crusaders will meet up tonight in a Class 6A state playoff quarterfinal game, set to start at 7 p.m., at Jesuit High School.
Tigard, the No. 2 team out of the Three Rivers League, and the No. 5 team in the final OSAA power rankings, brings an overall record of 10-1 into tonight's postseason contest. Jesuit, the Metro League champion, and the No. 4 team in the power rankings, is also 10-1 on the season.
The last time the Tigers and Crusaders met in postseason play was in the quarterfinal round of the 2015 state playoffs. Tigard won that game, played at Tigard High School, 42-41 in triple overtime. Since then, the teams met in the 2017 season-opener, with the Crusaders getting a 34-28 victory in a game played at Jesuit High School.
Both teams appear capable of turning in big-time performances in tonight's quarterfinal contest.
The Jesuit offense is led by senior quarterback Will Spitznagel (6-foot-1, 173 pounds), who was named the Metro League Offensive Player of the Year.
Joining Spitznagel on the All-Metro League first team offense, from Jesuit, are junior slotback Joey Gatto (5-7, 155), junior fullback Logan Horton (6-1, 225), junior running back Andy Alfieri (6-3, 210), senior center Seth Monahan (6-1, 240), junior lineman Shea Brooks (6-6, 214), and senior lineman Joe Quillin (6-2, 280).
The Jesuit defense is led by senior linebacker Zach Carr (6-2, 214) who was named the Metro League Defensive Player of the Year. Other Crusaders on the All-Metro League first-team defense include Alfieri at linebacker, Quillin on the defensive line and senior defensive back Josh Daul (6-0, 191).
The Tigard offense features senior running back Malcolm Stockdale (5-8, 173), who was a first-team All-Three Rivers League selection. For the season, Stockdale has rushed for 1,979 yards and 35 touchdowns on 290 carries.
Sophomore Drew Carter (6-2,180) is at quarterback for the Tigers. Carter, a second-team all-league pick, has completed 98 of 168 pass attempts for 2,008 yards and 18 touchdowns, with four interceptions.
Senior Jazz Ross (6-1,189), an honorable mention all-league pick, is the Tigers' leading receiver, with 26 receptions for 745 yards and four touchdowns. Senior Luke Ness (6-1, 165), a second-team all-league pick, has 23 catches for 441 yards and five scores. Junior Max Lenzy (5-10, 178) has added 18 catches for 363 yards and three touchdowns.
The Tigard offensive line is led by senior tackle Isaia Porter (6-2, 248), who shared the Three Rivers League Offensive Lineman of the Year honor. Tigard senior guard Mahmud Mustafa (6-0, 250) and junior guard Jonny Nomani (6-3, 265) were both first-team all-league selections.
The Tigard defense features Lenzy, who shared the Three Rivers League Defensive Player of the Year honors, in the backfield. For the season, Lenzy has seven interceptions.
The Tiger defensive line is anchored by Porter, who shared the Three Rivers League Defensive Lineman of the Year honors. Porter leads the Tigers with five quarterback sacks.
Tigard senior Noah Jackman (6-2, 234) also was a first-team all-league selection on the defensive line. Tigard senior Mitchell Cross (6-1, 220) was a first-team all-league pick at inside linebacker. Ross earned first-team all-league accolades at outside linebacker.
Tigard has another weapon in junior kicker Jackson Cleaver (6-1, 195). For the season, Cleaver has made 62 of 66 extra-point kicks, and eight of 11 field-goal attempts, for 86 total points.
The winner of tonight's game at Jesuit will face either Lake Oswego or Central Catholic in a state playoff semifinal game, to be played Nov. 23 at Hillsboro Stadium.