Three touchdown passes by junior quarterback Anthony Pino and a stellar defense propelled No. 11 St. Paul's (8-1, 5-1) past Boys' Latin, 20-0, on Friday in Brooklandville.
The victory sends the defending Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association BConference champs back to the title game next week against Archbishop Curley.
The game is set for next Saturday at 7p.m. at Archbishop Spalding in Severn.
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A blocked punt set up St. Paul's first scoring drive, which concluded with a 4-yard pass from Pino to senior running back Keifer Rawlings for a 7-0 lead with 56 seconds remaining in the opening quarter.
The Crusaders found the end zone again on their next drive that covered 57 yards in eight plays and finished with a 9-yard out pattern from Pino to sophomore receiver Tyler Rockhill for a 14-0 advantage.
After that, Boys' Latin's defense stepped up, sacking Pino four times and forcing two fumbles while blanking St. Paul's for more than 28 minutes.
The Crusaders didn't score again until the 4:09 mark of the fourth quarter on Pino's pass to sophomore Kurt Rawlings for a 20-0 lead.
On the other hand, the Lakers were throttled by St. Paul's defense and they didn't earn a first down until their first series of the second half. Boys' Latin's deepest penetration into Crusaders territory came after junior Devin Shewell recovered a fumble at the 15-yard line and the Lakers eventually moved to the 8-yard line before running out of downs.
"We just couldn't generate anything offensively," Lakers coach Ritchie Schell said.
Howard 21, No. 7 River Hill 3: The key for the Lions against the visiting Hawks was to play against the team on the field, and not the one in the state record books.
"Sometimes when River Hill gets off the bus I've seen teams pack it in early, but our kids believed," Howard coach Bruce Strunk said.
Howard senior quarterback Kevin Sheahin completed five of his seven first-half pass attempts for 153 yards and two touchdowns to Justin Marsh (64 yards) and Neil Caruso (18).
Four-time state champion River Hill answered Caruso's touchdown reception with a 38-yard field goal by Alex Potocko, but the Lions extended the lead again just more than a minute later on Sheahin's long strike to Marsh.
The Hawks got the ball to start the third quarter, but four second-half turnovers thwarted any chance of a comeback. Howard junior Jamil Campbell made two interceptions, the second of which set up a short touchdown run by Sheahin. Kyle Walker recovered a fumble near midfield, and Christian Dargan intercepted a pass inside Howard's 15-yard line that allowed the Lions to run out the clock.
Andrew Conrad, Baltimore Sun Media Group
Edmondson 14, No. 5 Dunbar 0: Strong safety Jaequan Hills converted two turnovers by the Poets (7-2) into two touchdowns for the Red Storm (6-3) at Poly.
Hill returned a fumble recovery 73 yards for a touchdown in the first quarter and returned an interception 55 yards for a score in the third quarter.
Dunbar drove to the Edmondson 5-yard line, but the Red Storm's red-zone defense held.
No. 10 Archbishop Curley 41, John Carroll 6: Shawn Fenner had eight carries for 116 yards and two touchdowns to lead the Friars (9-1) past the Patriots (4-6).
Curley faces St. Paul's in the MIAA A Conference championship at 7 p.m. next Saturday at Archbishop Spalding.
No. 12 Perry Hall 41, No. 14 Milford Mill 6: Jeff Iweh rushed for 219 yards and a touchdown to lead the host Gators (8-1) past the Millers (6-3).
Will King and Mike Morris each had two rushing touchdowns for Perry Hall.
Douglass 38, W.E.B. DuBois 6: Cameron West threw for 240 yards and a touchdown to lead the Ducks (9-0) past the host Panthers.
Mervo 36, Forest Park 0: Tyree Dowery completed five of eight passes for 132 yards and two touchdowns to lead the Mustangs (3-6) past the host Foresters.
Baltimore Sun staff contributed to this article.