For one half of football, it appeared the Cardinal Mooney High football team would christen the new synthetic turf at John Health Field with a dominant win.
The Cougars (2-3) jumped on Victory Christian Academy (4-0) early, racing to a 20-0 lead after one quarter. Senior quarterback Ryan Bolduc threw three touchdowns in the frame, one each to Ty Nevels, Cameron Heald and Lauriel Trotman. Meanwhile, Victory Christian couldn't get anything going, dealing with snapping issues and porous run blocking. It seemed everything was coming up Mooney.
Then the quarter ended, and the Mooney mojo left with it. The Cougars would not score another point, but did lead 20-0 at the half. Victory Christian would score 28 of them by the end of the night, with 21 coming in the fourth quarter. Senior Victory Christian running back Cornelius Shaw, the holder of offers from Nebraska and Kentucky, among other schools, ran for 200 yards and a touchdown on 30 carries. He also blocked a punt that a teammate recovered in the end zone for VCA's first score.
Even a late Cardinal Mooney possession starting at the Victory Christian 45 yard line, with a chance to tie the game, turned into nothing, and the Cougars would lose 28-20.
Bolduc finished with 167 passing yards and three touchdowns, plus two fourth-quarter interceptions, and junior running back Dylan Turner had 78 rushing yards.