SANDY — It was another humbling night for defending 5A state champion Jordan.
In the nightcap of the Xfinity Challenge at Rio Tinto Stadium on Saturday, the ‘Diggers ran into a buzz saw against one of the best teams in New Jersey as Bergen Catholic rolled to a 56-26 victory over Jordan.
Bergen Catholic racked up 572 yards of total offense and never trailed as it handed Jordan its third-straight loss — all against national-caliber programs.
The loss was the second-straight game Jordan has allowed more than 50 points, a definite concern with region play just two weeks away.
Despite the defeat, Jordan quarterback Austin Kafentzis had a career day playing in the shadows of Jordan High. The junior completed 18 of 36 passes for 446 yards and three touchdowns, eclipsing his previous career high of 393 yards against West Jordan during his freshman season.
Kafentzis also added 123 rushing yards as Jordan finished with 619 yards of total offense. Kafentzis accounted for 569 of those yards, ranking fourth in state history for individual total offense.
Mason Krueger was the recipient of eight of Kafentzis’ completions for 216 yards.
Jordan had a chance to set the tone early after marching 75 yards on its opening drive, but that drive stalled with an incompletion on fourth down at Bergen’s 5-yard line. Following an interception by Krueger on Bergen’s first play, Jordan again had a chance to take the early lead, but instead missed a 27-yard field goal.
It wasn’t long until the ‘Diggers were playing catch up the rest of the evening.
The Crusaders quickly drove 80 yards to take a 7-0 lead, and then after a Jordan fumble scored again for a 14-0 lead with 4:12 remaining in the first quarter.
It was the beginning of a busy night for the scoreboard operator.
Kafentzis connected with Tayler Johnson on an 85-yard touchdown pass to cut the deficit to 14-7 with 3:59 remaining, but less than two minutes later Bergen was back in front 21-7 as highly recruited standout Garrett Dickerson hauled in his second TD catch of the game.
Kafentzis again responded with another quick touchdown as he took a designed draw play and raced 64 yards for the score with 1:38 left.
After that, it was all Bergen.
The Crusaders scored on three straight possessions in the second quarter to build a 42-14 lead. Corey Russo accounted for two of those scores, as he finished the day with 217 yards and four TDs.
Jordan’s Connor Bolingbroke cut the deficit to 42-20 with a 19-yard touchdown reception just before the half, but any hope of a rally was quickly extinguished by Bergen in the third quarter as it scored on its opening possession to go up 49-20.
The Beetdiggers return to action next Friday with another difficult game against Herriman, which will be very confident after upsetting Lone Peak on Friday.