No. 14 Georgetown Prep’s 14-7 victory against No. 16 Landon in Bethesda on Saturday was not much more complicated than the Little Hoyas maintaining their identity. Excluding two kneel-downs, Prep ran 54 plays; Hampton carried on 35 of them. He piled up 263 yards and two touchdowns. The other 19 snaps produced seven yards. This was no secret: The Little Hoyas were going as far as Hampton took them, and his second touchdown with 91 seconds left took them to a victory.
Who is this Prep team now? “A team that has pride and that never gives up,” Hampton said.
After a scoreless first half, Landon (4-2, 1-1) broke the stalemate with a five-play, 70-yard drive to open the third quarter. When Prep (5-2, 2-0) took possession early in the fourth quarter still trailing 7-0, Hampton kept chipping away.
Hampton ran to the right for four yards. He ran left for four more. He went up the middle for 15, 11 and 12. Left again for seven. Down the left sideline for 12, into the end zone, his seventh run on 11 snaps.
After Landon went three-and-out, Hampton bruised the Bears’ defense again with five carries over six plays, including a 47-yard jaunt. He cut outside, then inside, then back outside. “We just wore down a little bit,” Landon Coach Paul Padalino said.
When Hampton landed in the end zone again after a seven-yard run, after he carried his team the whole way, his teammates picked him up.
“The call was power,” Hampton said in a postgame interview interrupted twice by teammates calling “Jalen!” as they requested his presence in a team photo. “Everything started slowing down for me. I was able to see the holes and where I was supposed to go.”
After four straight wins, Prep is in position to defend its IAC title — unless somebody finds an answer for Hampton over its final three games.
Power and counter, Hampton said, are Prep’s bread and butter. Anybody wishing to slow down the Little Hoyas can just try to stop them.
“Throwing the ball isn’t what we’re doing a lot right now,” said Paro, who crafted the game plan. “Every once in a while you get someone special, and [Hampton is] special. We’re really proud of him.”