Catonsville High's 28-18 victory over Poly at Baltimore Polytechnic High Friday night earned them the school's first-ever regional football championship and a place in history for a couple of reasons.
"I'm so happy for these guys because they are the first ones to do it and they are always going to be that and nobody can take that away," said Catonsville coach Rich Hambor whose squad advanced to the Class 4A state semifinals against Old Mill, Friday, Nov. 26 at 7 p.m.
Catonsville (12-0) also will go down as the last team that Poly coach Roger Wrenn will ever face after 40 years of coaching.
"I feel special and I'm glad he was involved in it because he is one of the greatest coaches in the history of Maryland," Hambor said. "To be involved in a game with him, you know it's going to be a classy game, a classic game and I couldn't be prouder to play against him, regardless of the win. He's a great guy."
After scouting the Comets, Wrenn and his undersized Engineers (11-1) may have preferred facing another opponent.
"When I scouted these guys, I thought, boy, they are big and physical and we are little and its going to be a battle for us," Wrenn said.
Catonsville dominated the battle in the trenches behind an offensive line that featured center Nathan Reeves, guards Jon Reymann and Brandon Dixon, tackles Travis Davis and Antoine Wright and tight end Julian Jones
They helped the Comet backs gain 409 of the team's 437 total yards on the ground.
DeAndre Lane rushed for three touchdowns and carried 44 times for 281 yards.
Fullback Julian Singletary ran 11 times for 100 yards and Josh Hylton had three rushes for 21 yards.
"It's their personality to run the ball and run it and run it and run it and play that power game until you stop it," Wrenn said.
Poly never could stop it consistently.
On Catonsville's first possession, the Comets went 75 yards in eight plays, scoring on a 15-yard run by Singletary on a trap.
They led 7-0 with 8:32 left in the first quarter when Eric Medinger hit the first of four extra points.
"Jon Reymann was just outstanding today," Hambor said. "He was the right guard making the trap block."
Dixon and left guard Reeves were also perfect in their assignments.
"Every time we ran the trap, they blocked perfectly and I got in the open field and it felt great," Singletary said.
Poly answered with an 8-play 63-yard drive that culminated in a 25-yard touchdown scamper from quarterback Darrell Milburn.
Joseth Hylton sacked Milburn on the two-point conversion attempt and the Comets maintained a 7-6 lead.
Catonsville responded on its next series, taking eight snaps again and logging 53 yards. Lane went 24-yards for a score on the first play of the second quarter and the Comets led 14-6.