JEFFERSON HILLS - Hollidaysburg traveled two hours west to face Thomas Jefferson for a Class AAA non-conference battle of undefeated big cats, but the Golden Tigers (2-1) got their eyes scratched out, 55-0, by the Jaguars (3-0), who have not lost a home game in eight years.
"[Thomas Jefferson] is an outstanding team," Hollidaysburg coach John Barton said. "We just couldn't get anything going tonight."
The Hollidaysburg defense had no answer for the Jaguar passing attack as Thomas Jefferson quarterback Joe Carroll threw for five touchdowns. He accomplished the feat before halftime and completed 11 passes on 16 attempts for 245 yards.
"[Carroll] looked like Peyton Manning out there," Barton said. "He was checking at the line, he was hitting his receivers in stride."
The Jaguars scored on the first play from scrimmage on a 70-yard strike from Carroll to Jake Mascaro and never looked back. After a 36-yard touchdown run by Byron Minous, Carroll hit Mascaro for another score, this time a 16-yard touchdown, later in the first quarter.
He also hit Zach Schademan for a 27-yard score (set up by a TJ fumble recovery on an errant Brian Urban pitch) midway through the first quarter.
The Golden Tigers tried a fake punt toward the end of the first quarter, but Greg Dinges' pass to Luke Aigner was 1 yard short and the Jaguars took over. Carroll took advantage of the gift by hitting Schademan for a 12-yard score to push the Jaguars' lead to 34-0 before the first quarter ended.
On their first possession of the second quarter, the Jaguars pushed their lead to 41-0 on a Jake Farrell 27-yard run.
Midway through the second quarter, the Golden Tigers went for it on fourth down but were stopped on a failed Brian Urban option keeper. After the Jaguars took over on downs, Carroll hit Mascaro on a 24-yard score to push the Thomas Jefferson lead to 48-0.
Mascaro caught four passes for 150 yards and three touchdowns, and Shademan caught seven passes for 95 yards and two touchdowns.
Urban was shaken up on the drive and was replaced by Caleb Parnell. Thomas Jefferson also replaced its quarterback as Christian Breisinger took over. It was the only possession in the first half that the Jaguars did not score.
"We tried to be patient but after [TJ] jumped on us, patience went out the window," Barton said. "Their defense is big and they're fast."
Midway through the third quarter, the Jags were trying to push the ball into the end zone again but Jake Farrell lost a fumble and Golden Tiger defensive back JT Ventura scooped up the ball near the goal line.
Josh Bickley came in for the Golden Tigers at quarterback on the possession. After punting on the possession, Hollidaysburg forced another fumble and Reid Miller recovered for the Golden Tigers at the Hollidaysburg 38-yard line.
The Golden Tigers fumbled it back to the Jaguars on the possession though, and they finished the scoring for the game on a 10-yard Brad Pahanish touchdown run.
"It might not look like it statistically, but we did do a few good things tonight," Barton said. "We stopped the run early and we had some nice inside runs ourselves."
Colton Ruggery gained 55 yards and Reid Miller gained 33 for the Golden Tigers. Luke Deanovich ran for 83 yards and Jake Farrell ran for 63 for the Jaguars.
Hollidaysburg will try to rebound next week at Knoch.
"We need to get better," Barton said. "Knoch is a very good team."
SCORE BY QUARTERS
Hollidaysburg 0 0 0 0 - 0
Thomas Jefferson34 14 0 7 -55
TJ-Mascaro 70 pass from Carroll (Danscak kick) 11:41
TJ-Minous 36 run (Danscak kick) 9:07
TJ-Mascaro 16 pass from Carroll (Danscak kick) 6:13
TJ-Schademan 22 pass from Carroll (Danscak kick) 3:22
TJ-Schademan 12 pass from Carroll (kick blocked) :33.6
TJ-Farrell 27 run (Danscak kick) 9:16
TJ-Mascaro 24 pass from Carroll (Danscak kick) 5:46
TJ-Phahanish 10 run (Danscak kick) 5:07
RUSHING: Hollidaysburg-Urban 8-(-7), Miller 12-33, Brunner 1-2, Hilling 1-(-1), Parnell 2-12, Ruggery 7-55. Thomas Jefferson-Minous 4-36, Farrell 8-63, Deanovich 4-83, Senich 1-42, Pahanish 1-10,
PASSING: Hollidaysburg-Urban 2-6-14, Parnell 0-1. Bickley 0-2. Thomas Jefferson-Carroll 11-16-6-245.
RECEIVING: Hollidaysburg-Hargis 1-3, Springer 1-13, Aigner 1-5. Thomas Jefferson-Mascaro 4-150, Schademan 7-95.