Robbinsdale Cooper survives QB injury, late surge by Bloomington Jefferson

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After racing out to a 21-0 lead in the first quarter, Robbinsdale Cooper had to hang on to hold Bloomington Jefferson off in the final minutes to earn a 33-26 win.

Click the video box on this page to see KSTP Sports’ extended highlights of Bloomington Jefferson at Robbinsdale Cooper

Camden Royal opened Cooper’s early offensive surge with a 55-yard touchdown on the second play of the game.

Cooper quarterback Joseph Russell hit Donte Williams for the second score before Williams took an interception back 69-yards to make it 21-0 after one quarter.

Russell left the game late in the second quarter after taking an awkward facemasking infraction and did not return.

After Cooper opened with three straight touchdowns, Cooper responded with three of their own.

The Jaguars gained some traction just before halftime when Carter Hansen hit Sam Wanzek for a short touchdown that cut Cooper’s lead to 21-7.

That same Hansen to Wanzek connection clicked again in the third quarter to make it 21-13.

Jefferson has a workhorse running back in senior Roosevelt Cage. He carried in a 14-yard score on the final offensive play of the third quarter to trim Cooper’s lead to two at 21-19.

Filling in after Russell’s injury, sophomore quarterback Jamarrius Courtney took over at quarterback for the Hawks. Early in the fourth quarter, he delivered a spectacular throw to David Connors, who had used the back of his thigh at one point during the catch to secure the ball as he tumbled near the back of the endzone. The highlight-reel play had Cooper up 27-19 with 11:09 to play.

With 2:35 to play, Terrence Matthews added what seemed to be just an insurance touchdown for the Hawks that made it 33-19.

But Jefferson made a valiant effort to rally. They marched the length of the field in just over a minute to set up a third Hanson / Wanzek touchdown which cut Cooper’s lead to 33-26 with 1:27 to go.

Jefferson recovered the ensuing onside kick, and had the ball trailing by a touchdown.

But, facing a do-or-die fourth down with under a minute to go – Cooper’s defense shut the rally down – closing out a 33-26 win.

The Hawks improve to 3-2 on the season, while Jefferson falls to 1-4.

Jefferson faces defending state 4A champion Chaska in the final week of the regular season, while Cooper will takes on Benilde-St. Margaret’s Wednesday November 11th in their finale.