Kevin Hogan leads Gonzaga past No. 3 DeMatha, 32-25
Sunday, October 3, 2010; 12:01 AM
In his third season as a starter, though, it is Hogan's ability to lead his team that is emerging, first-year Coach Aaron Brady said. That was critical Saturday, as the Eagles earned their biggest victory in eight years.
After third-ranked DeMatha tied the game early in the fourth quarter, Hogan completed all four of his passes on the game-winning drive, capped off by a five-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Matt O'Donnell as host Gonzaga earned a thrilling 32-25 victory over the Stags before 2,000 in Northwest Washington.
"He's a complete player, but the part of the game he's really growing at is the maturity level and keeping things together," said Brady, whose team had not beaten DeMatha since the 2002 Washington Catholic Athletic Conference championship game.
Hogan was outstanding in the first half, completing 11 of 13 passes for 165 yards and two touchdowns as the Eagles built a 25-14 lead.
All four of his passes in the third quarter fell incomplete, though, as DeMatha regained momentum. Running back Jacob Siwicki's 22-yard touchdown run up the middle tied the score at 25 after the Stags missed the point-after kick.
Just when it seemed DeMatha (3-2, 1-1 WCAC) might pull out yet another game in which it trailed in the fourth quarter, Hogan rallied Gonzaga (4-1, 2-0). He completed a 26-yard pass down the right sideline to wide receiver Brady Malone. Running back D'Lante Martino (career-high 152 yards rushing, three touchdowns) broke off an 18-yard run. Finally, on third-and-goal, Hogan faked a handoff to Martino, rolled to his right and passed to an open O'Donnell for the winning touchdown with seven minutes left.
"A team like that, they're going to hit their run," said Hogan, who finished 16 of 22 for 225 yards with touchdown passes to three receivers. "We knew we had to respond immediately."
After its defense held, Gonzaga ran out the clock, with Hogan throwing to Malone for 14 yards to convert on third and 13. As the final seconds ticked off, the Eagles started to celebrate.
DeMatha, meantime, has allowed at least 30 points four times and faces second-ranked Good Counsel on Friday. Several Stags were injured in the game; standout offensive lineman Cyrus Kouandjio did not return after spraining his left knee during the opening series.
"It's gut-check time, we're going to find out what we're made of," DeMatha Coach Bill McGregor said. "We've got DeMatha across our chest, but we're not playing like DeMatha."