Last Friday was a night of celebration for the Catonsville football team on homecoming as the Comets scored on each of their first seven possessions and rolled to a 49-8 victory over Towson (1-6).
But that didn’t happen, and while Oriole players were heading home, the Comets (5-2) were continuing their march toward a third consecutive playoff berth.
That march continues with the only road game left on the schedule, Saturday, Oct. 20 (2 p.m.) at Milford Mill (6-1).
“Milford Mill is a huge game,” Catonsville coach Rich Hambor said.“I told the kids it’s like a playoff game because if we win out, I feel really good about our chances of getting a home playoff game.”
The Milford Mill game will reunite the three-headed monster of running backs, as DeAndre' Lane will be back in a starting role with senior tailback Joseth Hylton and senior fullback Julian Singletary.
Lane injured his hamstring against Hereford on Sept. 26 and hasn’t carried the ball since.
In the two games since his absence, Hylton has rushed for 373 yards and six touchdowns.
Against Towson, Hylton gained 204 yards on 12 carries and scored on touchdown runs of 52, 36 and one yard.
“We are not the team we were last year so we need everybody,” Hylton said. “Once we get everybody healthy I think we will finish off strong.”
Singletary is peaking toward the end of the season, just like he did last fall.
Against Towson, he had touchdown runs of 18 and 20 yards and gained 76 yards on six carries.
Lane, who will play at the University of Maryland next season, was the leading rusher (609 yards) when he was injured.
“When those three backs are in there together, their is nobody that has three backs as good as those guys,” Hambor said. “When they are all healthy and in at the same time, it is daunting for the other team.”
Singletary, who also starts on defense, as do Hylton and Lane, is enjoying the added offensive workload.
“I definitely like getting the ball,” Singletary said. “That just gives us a chance to show what we can do.”
Hambor likes what he sees from the 6-foot-2, 220-pound Singletary.
“He’s one of the most dominant players we have out there on both sides of the ball,” Hambor said. “He’s a blocker, runner and linebacker. He made two one-handed tackles against Towson.”
>Lane’s addition against Milford should give Singletary and Hylton more breaks.
“The big picture for DeAndre’ right now is for our team,” Hambor said. “He knew to help the team we had to hold him out (against Towson) and get him ready for Milford Mill. That’s also the best for him in the long run.”
With each game, the offensive line of center Jake Faircloth, guards Zack Delker and Brandon Dixon and tackles Mason Klompus and Julian Robinson is jelling.
“Our offensive line is absolutely great and we’ve had the same guys all year,” Hambor said. “They are crisper, sharper and their blocks are in synch.”
Quarterback Justin Sprankle has benefitted and against Towson he connected with Teddy Crayton for a score for the fifth time this season.
Defensively, the Comets have rebounded after their injury-riddled squad allowed 56 points in a loss to Hereford.
Since then, the only points from Eastern Tech and Towson came in the final minute of each game.
“We are getting that bond, that connection and we have the chemistry,” Singletary said.
Hylton agrees with his classmate.
“We are a team,” he said.
But, coach Hambor knows each win affects more than just the team.
“This whole thing is about Catonsville in total,” Hambor said. “The team, the coaches, the school, the community, alumni, everybody. Our kids all really embrace that.”
After Milford Mill, the Comets return home on Oct. 26 against Kenwood (3-4) and Nov. 2 against Parkville (5-2).