Brockton lands a haymaker on BC High
BROCKTON — All-world defensive back Albert Louis-Jean is also an elite receiver. The question for Brockton heading into last night’s season opener against BC High: Who was going to get him the ball?
Paul Mroz solved that conundrum in the No. 2 Boxers’ 16-6 victory over the No. 5 Eagles, throwing for 171 yards and two touchdowns in his first varsity start.
“Obviously [Mroz] stepped up,’’ said Brockton coach Peter Colombo, who decided to start Mroz over sophomore Austin Roberts a little before game time. “He had a great game and gives us another dimension on offense.’’
Mroz tied the score on his first completion, a flawless 55-yard launch along the left sideline to Louis-Jean, widely considered the top recruit in the state. A play-action fooled the Eagles, leaving Louis-Jean with no one to contend with.
Lucas Depina gave the Boxers the lead with the conversion.
“[Louis-Jean] did a great job of running by that defender and I just put it up there to the moon so he could get that touchdown,’’ Mroz said. “Play-action is like cheese, you know? I just fake it and then [the defenders] eat the cheese.”
Brockton’s vaunted defense picked up Mroz after a mistake midway through the second quarter. The senior dropped back on third and 1 with an eye to float one over double coverage for a touchdown, but a leaping Deontae Ramey-Doe picked it off at the Eagles’ 4. Five plays later, BC High quarterback Bartley Regan fumbled the snap in a no-huddle — the second time that happened — and the ball was swallowed up by Brockton’s Saquaan Louis on the BC High 30.
Trevon Offley, the Boxers’ feature back, separated his shoulder on a 2-yard gain in the second quarter and was sidelined for the remainder of the game.
On the next play, Mroz led Depina perfectly for a 28-yard touchdown pass in which Depina broke through three defenders.
“We knew they would be tough, and that had something to do with playing Paul,’’ said Colombo. With a 13-6 lead heading into the second half, Offley’s loss was offset by Joshua Brewster.
The junior back took over the ground game in the fourth. Brewster carried seven times for 27 yards on a drive that chewed up 8 minutes 11 seconds. Depina hit a 19-yard field goal with 2:02 remaining to ice the game.
“I had to step up,’’ Brewster said. “I prepared all last season. You always have to be ready.’’
BC High’s Preston Cooper opened up the scoring with a 30-yard touchdown run on the Eagles’ second series.
Lined up to the right of Regan in the shotgun, Cooper took a direct snap and jettisoned to the left, getting several key blocks and reaching the end zone untouched.