Coming into last night’s game at Compton, the Jordan defense had allowed just 10.1 points per game, but by the time the Panthers realized that junior Tarbabe James McConico even had the ball, the backup tailback was already on his way to 266 yards and four touchdowns on just eight carries, leading Compton to a 38-22 victory.
McConico scored on runs of 36, 68 and 7 yards as Compton took a 26-3 lead into the half, and sealed the game with a stunning 90-yard touchdown run as the Tarbabes racked up 449 total rushing yards against the heralded Jordan defense.
“[McConico] was our fullback last year,” said Compton coach Calvin Bryant, “And he did what I told him to do: he ran track in the offseason. And it’s been history since then.”
The game seemed to be history after just two quarters, in which Jordan could not stop Compton’s running attack and had trouble getting their own offense in gear. Panther quarterback John Timu has used his legs to get Jordan out of trouble all season long, but the Compton defense used clever spies and blitzes to make the junior uncomfortable.
“We just wanted to just make sure we limited his runs and contained him,” said Bryant, who made sure to prep his defense for Timu. “We used a fast guy on scout team last week, one of our running backs.”
Timu did break free more than once, racking up 89 yards on 11 carries and throwing 9-20 for 121 yards. He showed his big play potential with a 47-yard touchdown run and a 52-yard touchdown pass, but it was not enough to overcome McConico and the Compton offense. Feature Tarbabe back Curry Williams also ran 16 times for 128 yards to keep the ball in Compton’s hands for the majority of the game.
Trailing by 23, Jordan came out of halftime on a mission. Marching 60 yards down the field for a 9-yard Princeton Fuiamor touchdown run, chewing up nearly six minutes of time in the process. But Compton answered right back with a 6-yard touchdown run by Byron Walker, stretching the lead to 32-10. Jordan countered again with Timu’s highlight reel (see video above) 47-yard touchdown scramble down the sideline, making it 32-16.
But Jordan would turn the ball over on downs on its next two possessions, first as Timu dove for the yardstick but came up short, then completed a deep fade in the back of the endzone that was called out of bounds. McConico took advantage on the next drive, running between the tackle to move the pile for ten yards before spotting daylight on the outside and dashing 90 yards down the sideline to put the game out of reach, 38-16.
Timu completed a 52-yard touchdown pass to #6 in the closing minutes to make it 38-22.
The Compton victory makes a profound impact in the Moore League standings, leaving the Tarbabes as one of only two still undefeated teams in the league, along with Long Beach Poly. Jordan falls into second place at 2-1, remaining in prime position for a top three spot at the end of the season.
Jordan visits Wilson next Thursday, while Compton travels to Millikan on Friday before their inevitable showdown against Poly the following week.