Jordan Gowins' best move of the night might have come before the game.
St. Anthony's returning Hansen Award-winning running back took aside quarterback Tom Walsh, who was about to make his first varsity start in place of injured Steve Genova: "I'm the guy you can lean on if you get in trouble. Just give me the ball and I'll do the rest."
On St. Anthony's first offensive play, Gowins ran it 53 yards for a touchdown and he was just getting warmed up.
The Boston College-bound senior scored the Friars' first five touchdowns and rushed for 250 yards on just 13 carries in a season-opening 49-16 non-league victory over visiting Buffalo St. Joseph's. "He's a special kid," St. Anthony's coach Rich Reichert said. "He makes those zone reads and once he gets to the edge it's over."
Gowins helped Walsh have an easy night as a fill-in for Genova, who according to athletic director Don Buckley suffered a stress fracture in a foot in practice this week and is expected back in two weeks.
Walsh hit Gowins on a swing pass for an 8-yard touchdown that made it 14-0 and Gowins, after a 24-yard run to put the Friars in scoring position, danced in from the 1 for a 21-0 lead.
Gowins' biggest play not only broke the game open but broke the spirit of the Marauders. They had scored on a 34-yard touchdown pass to make it 21-6 and were poised to get back in the game after pinning St. Anthony's at its own 6 following a muffed kickoff.
But Gowins got to the sideline and out-sprinted St. Joseph's secondary for a 94-yard touchdown run. The fourth of Kyle Facibene's seven extra points made it 28-6.
"When I get in the open field, I never think I'm going to get caught," Gowins said. "I read my blocks, read the defense and use my natural instincts to make my cuts. When my linemen open holes like that, it makes it a lot easier to make my reads."
Walsh hit Jordan Williams for a 5-yard score and Kwesi Thomas-Henderson, who replaced Gowins midway through the third quarter, had a 72-yard touchdown run.
St. Anthony's defensive end Pete Corbett had three sacks and linebacker Kyle O'Donnell added two.
The Marauders beat St. Anthony's in last year's opener, the Friars' only loss.
"What a great way to start this season," Gowins said.