Salpointe grad Pena scores winning touchdown for Brown against Cornell


Salpointe Catholic graduate Johnny Pena’s 1-yard touchdown plunge on the second overtime possession lifted Brown over Cornell 28-21 on Saturday afternoon in Providence, R.I.

Another former Lancer also on Brown’s roster, linebacker Jay Williams, had seven tackles against Cornell, including two for lost yardage.

Pena, a senior who graduated from Salpointe in 2013, had 96 yards rushing on 23 carries in the game. Brown got the ball first in the second overtime and needed four plays to score, with Pena plowing into the end zone from one yard out. Pena had 12 rushing yards in the series.

Johnny Pena leads Brown in rushing through the first six games of this season (Brown University photo)

Johnny Pena leads Brown in rushing through the first six games of this season (Brown University photo)

Pena is Salpointe’s all-time leader in rushing and touchdowns with 4,765 career rushing yards and 64 career touchdowns.

He leads Brown with 293 yards on 74 carries through six games. His game-winning touchdown against Cornell was his first of the season.

Williams, a junior who graduate from Salpointe in 2014, matched his season high with the seven tackles against Cornell. He is Brown’s fourth-leading tackler with 27. He has 6.5 tackles for lost yardage.

Former Arizona football player Jay Dobyns, who coached Pena and Williams at Salpointe as an assistant there, visited his former pupils Saturday. He shared photos of the reunion with Pena and Williams and family members of the players on his Facebook page:


Here is a photo by our Andy Morales of Pena when he was with the Lancers as a junior in 2012:


FOLLOW @JAVIERJMORALES ON TWITTER! publisher, writer and editor Javier Morales is a former Arizona Press Club award winner. He is a former Arizona Daily Star beat reporter for the Arizona basketball team, including when the Wildcats won the 1996-97 NCAA title. He has also written articles for, Bleacher Report, Lindy’s Sports,, The Arizona Republic, Sporting News and Baseball America, among many other publications. He has also authored the book “The Highest Form of Living”, which is available at Amazon.


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