On a night when Broadneck needed a win to help secure its spot in the Class 4A East playoffs, the host Bruins played the first half as if they were instead trying to impress a bowl committee.
Broadneck scored the game's first 31 points, held No. 11 Arundel scoreless until early in the third quarter, and then survived a sloppy third quarter that included seven fumbles to earn a 37-18 win.
"We came out and we were ready to go. The focus that we saw this week was phenomenal," Broadneck coach Rob Harris said. "I think in the first half we showed exactly what we can do when we're playing at our best. We were hitting on all three phases of the game."
The win was the seventh straight for Broadneck (7-1), which entered play second in the Class 4A East point standings. It also marked its first win over Arundel (6-2) during the regular season in seven years, including last year's 47-17 thrashing.
Despite their third quarter turnovers, the Bruins managed to stay in command, and never were seriously threatened.
Broadneck controlled this game from the outset, taking its first lead when junior quarterback Canaan Gebele found wideout Alex Ruden on a quick pass at the 5 yard line. The junior spun around his defender for a touchdown.
"We were executing, our O-line was blocking, and we came out throwing the ball," Ruden said. "Coach was saying all week that this was a playoff atmosphere … This kind of shows what we can do on offense and on defense."
A huge play on special teams then extended the lead. On a fourth down from the Arundel 8, senior Landon Reecher burst through the line to block Isaiah Watson's punt, and teammate Michael Hildebrand fell on the ball in the endzone.
Meanwhile Arundel, which had entered the night averaging 45.8 points over its past five games — all wins — could muster little offense.
Despite playing no-huddle for the entire first half, the Wildcats managed just 138 total yards by halftime, with quarterback Anthony Messenger completing 15-of-30 passes. He finished 30-of-56 for 284 yards, with three touchdowns and two interceptions.
"We just had to stay determined and be disciplined," Bruins cornerback Devon Williams said. "Their offense is quick, so we just had to stick with our assignments."
Gebele, who finished 9-of-19 for 198 yards and two touchdowns, didn't throw nearly as much, but was more efficient.
One play after Broadneck stopped Arundel on a fourth-and-3 near midfield, Gebele dropped back and fired down the right sideline to Ruden, who beat his defender for a 45 yard touchdown to increase the lead to 21-0.
After Gebele scored on a sneak from the 1-yard line with 3:32 left in the half, the Bruins led 31-0.
Broadneck did its best to let Arundel back into the game after halftime, beginning the second half with four fumbles on its first five touches. They recovered the first three before finally losing one, which led to the Wildcats' first score, an 18-yard pass from Messenger to Watson.
Yet another fumble, the Bruins' sixth of the quarter, set up Messenger's 9-yard scoring pass to Jordan Stewart to cut the lead to 31-12 late in the third.
Broadneck, however, then sealed the win on Devon Williams' 41-yard touchdown run early in the fourth quarter.
Arundel 0 0 12 6 -- 18
Broadneck 14 17 0 6 -- 37
B- Ruden 14 pass from Gebele (Smith kick)
B- Hildebrand fumble recovery in endzone (Smith kick)
B- Ruden 45 pass from Gebele (Smith kick)
B- Smith 31 FG
B- Gebele 1 run (Smith kick)
A- Watson 18 pass from Messenger (kick failed)
A- Stewart 9 pass from Messenger (pass failed)
B- Williams 41 run (kick failed)
A- Givner 23 pass from Messenger (pass failed)