The Woodlawn-Towson game was spotlighted as the Ravens’ RISE High School Football Showdown game of the week and it was much more than that.
Both teams came into the contest with 2-1 records and Towson was in seventh place in the Class 3A regional standings with a point average of 4.67.
Host Woodlawn was eighth (4.33 average).
The top eight teams in each region make the playoffs this year and the Warriors took a step in that direction with an 8-0 victory in a game that included 20 combined penalties.
Baltimore Ravens running back Mark Ingram II, Ravens’ mascot Poe and the Ravens’ cheerleaders were on hand before and during the game and the only touchdown of the game came on a 24-yard touchdown pass from Kanell Williams to Keyon Bryant with 3:05 left in the third quarter.
“That was s scheduled play. We ran trips to the right and we had a corner post and a hitch and finally my quarterback saw the hitch guys open because they were bailing on us, they didn’t want us to be him over the top so he made a good throw this time and Keyon came up with the pass,” Woodlawn coach Elwood Townsend said.
Amir Renwick caught the two-point conversion and the defense did the rest.
That defense was led by sophomore right defensive end Marcus Harris Jr., who had eight tackles and three sacks.
“He came up from the JV team last year and he has a motor on him that won’t quit,” Townsend said. “If he stays focused he can be really good. He rushes off the edge pretty well for us.”
Harris Jr. also blocked a punt and recovered it in the first half.
Perry Hall coach Ryan Pittillo was impressed with the sophomore end’s ability to make plays from the opposite field on power sweeps.
“I’ve never seen that happen before. I’m guessing our snaps were to slow or we were getting out of the backfield was too slow or the penetration in the front was giving us too much,” Pittillo said.
Towson’s best scoring chance came on its third play from scrimmage when quarterback Nick Grant connected on a 62-yard touchdown pass to Jayquan Jenkins, but it was nullified because of a holding penalty.
“That was probably the most penalties I’ve seen in a game,” Pittillo said.
“It just seemed like when everything went our way, things countered and went the opposite way,” Pittillo said. “It’s frustrating. I don’t have the stats, but every time I looked back it was third and 30.”
Woodlawn’s top rusher was senior George Washington, who gained 51 yards, but his longest run was 25 yards on a fake punt.
“They didn’t really put together any drives on us,” Pittillo said. “It seemed like we were hitting them in the backfield. I really thought our defense was going to shut them out the way that we did. We just gave up that one play and offensively, we just couldn’t get going.”
Towson’s defense was led by linebackers Damone Jones and Reese Stevenson.
Woodlawn linebacker Renwick had a strong game and Tyon Weddington returned an interception 38 yards for a touchdown, but that play was nullified because of a holding penalty on the return.
The penalties on Woodlawn, that included one that nullified a 38-yard pass in the first quarter, didn’t please coach Townsend.
“We definitely needed this game, especially with the loss to Randallstown last week, which I felt like we shouldn’t have took, but we needed an eye-opener like that,” Townsend said. “We can’t go late in the year not losing a game and than we lose a game in the playoffs or something like that, so it was good to get it out of the way and hopefully we will keep the momentum and keep going forward.”