J-D tops Mexico; ESM falls from first place

A stirring comeback not only put the Jamesville-DeWitt football team into the win column for the first time in 2010, it also kept alive a dream of returning to the Section III Class A playoffs.

The Red Rams rallied to beat Mexico, 28-20, sending the Tigers out of first place in the Class A American division while moving to 1-2 in league play (1-4 overall).

And while that was going on, East Syracuse-Minoa saw its three-game win streak crash down in a 54-35 loss to Cortland, who took the outright lead in the American division with its third consecutive victory.

J-D knew the task against Mexico mainly involved containing running back Brandon Burnham, who had torched Fulton for 319 yards the week before.

For a while, that proved unsuccessful. Burnham's runs set up Bryce Nixon's 14-yard touchdown pass to Austin LaBoeuf in the first quarter, and Burnham himself found the end zone twice on runs of 13 and 36 yards in the second period.

Next to that, the Rams could only get on the board once in the first half, as Alex Hatem scored on an eight-yard run. So J-D trailed 20-7 at the break, and it was looking like so many other struggles of the recent past.

But the second half was another matter. J-D started to contain Burnham, and Ahkeen Williams started to move his team down the field with more regularity.

It was Amani Jackson that launched the comeback in earnest, going 34 yards for a TD in the third quarter as Williams ran in for two points to make it 20-15.

Early in the final period, Williams hit again, scoring from eight yards out to put J-D ahead 21-20, and Jackson's two-point run expanded the lead to three. Mexico could not answer, and Curtis Walker sealed J-D's comeback by going 36 yards for the game's final TD.

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