2009 Week Six: Highlands 12 Cincinnati Saint Xavier 7
Date/Time: Friday, September 25 at 6:30PM
Fort Thomas Highlands hosted Cincinnati Saint Xavier in a match-up billed as the national game of the week by MaxPreps, Rivals High and ESPN Rise and did not disappoint the home crowd. The Bluebirds, ranked 18th nationally by MaxPreps, defeated the Bombers 12-7 at David Cecil Memorial Stadium to remain perfect for the season. Saint Xavier was undefeated heading into the showdown, having blown out defending Kentucky Class 6A champion Louisville Trinity the previous week.
Highlands entered the game, which was televised nationally on the CBS College Sports Network, as the decided underdog but set the tone early, jumping out to a 2-0 lead in the first quarter after scoring a safety. The score remained 2-0 at halftime. In the third quarter, Highlands quarterback Will Bardo scored the team's only touchdown on a 4-yard run. Earlier in the drive, Bardo scampered 66 yards to move the 'Birds into the red zone. Bardo racked up 133 yards on the ground and 52 yards in the air; he was named the player of the game. Highlands kicker Adam Weinel made a 22-yard field goal in the fourth quarter to round out the scoring for the Bluebirds.
The story of the game, however, was the play of Highlands' defense, spearheaded by linebacker Brandon Roller. The 'Birds kept the potent Bombers' offense out of the end zone until Saint Xavier registered their only score with just 27 seconds left in the game. Highlands' defense made 2 interceptions and recovered a fumble in the contest.
This game marks the first time in the storied history of the Highlands football program that the Bluebirds defeated the top-ranked team in the nation, as Cincinnati Saint Xavier was the top-ranked team in the country according to the Massey Ratings.
The Highlands JV and freshman teams did not play games this week. The Highlands-Campbell County freshman game, scheduled to be played at Campbell County on Thursday, September 24 at 6:00PM was canceled due to poor weather.
- Highlands' 2009 varsity record: 6-0 (0-0 in district play)
- Highlands' 2009 JV record: 4-0
- Highlands' 2009 freshman record: 2-2