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St. Thomas goes to 3-0 with dominating win over UW-Eau Claire

Perra throws TD pass, catches another in 49-0 romp

September 23, 2018 - 7:56 am

St. Thomas senior quarterback Jacques Perra threw a touchdown pass and had one reception for a score in a 49-0 win over Wisconsin-Eau Claire on Saturday, the unbeaten Tommies handing the Blugolds their first loss of the season.

Perra, a transfer from the University of Minnesota and first-team all-state selection at Roseville High School, played only the first two quarters in the Tommies' third straight dominant victory to open 2018.

Perra brought the crowd at O'Shaughnessy Stadium to its feet when he gathered in a 14-yard pass from running back Josh Parks late in the first quarter to give the Tommies (3-0) a 15-0 lead. Using what's becoming known as the "Philly Special," Perra handed off to Parks and streaked the opposite direction, untouched and uncovered toward the end zone, with Parks' left-hand thow hitting him in stride.

"We run those for more reason than anything to keep our guys healthy," said St. Thomas coach Glenn Caruso during the WCCO radio postgame show. "If all we do is run run plays, and all they want to do is bring blitzes and not cover anybody, that's putting our guys in harm's way." 

Tommies quarterback Jacques Perra
Jacques Perra

Perra later threw a 16-yard touchdown pass to Emmit Piesert, with Parks scoring twice on running plays.

The Tommie defense completed its second straight shutout, with defensive back Sam Gerrity intercepting two passes to give him four in three games. The Blugolds (2-1) managed only 131 yards of total offense, was forced to punt seven times, and had three turnovers.

"He's just really smooth and attacks the ball," said Caruso about Gerrity, a sophomore who was a standout at Blaine. "Sam is playing at a very, high level."

Since giving up a first-period touchdown to Trinity International in a season-opening 76-7 win, the Tommies defense has strung together 11 straight scoreless quarters.

St. Thomas has won 11 regular season games in a row heading into Saturday's MIAC matchup in Moorhead against Concordia. The Cobbers are 2-0 in conference play after beating Hamline on Saturday 55-0.

"They're loaded, that's a good football team," said Caruso. "Any time we go up to Concordia I expect a great game."