In all of about 13 minutes of game action Friday night, Marriotts Ridge football secured its first win of the 2018 campaign.
The Mustangs led, 21-0, with 10:51 to play in the second quarter when thunderstorms delayed both teams’ season opener. And after about 45 minutes of waiting and hoping to resume the contest, the coaches agreed to give the away side the victory instead of trying to reschedule the matchup for early next week.
“We couldn’t play until Tuesday, so we’d have Tuesday and Friday next week, which is just not ideal to ever play two football games two days apart,” Mt. Hebron Athletics and Activities Manager Brian Rau said. “...And then on top of that, we looked at the temperatures next week, and they’re supposed to be in the 90s every day, so to play a game in the 90s and then have to turn around and play another game in the 90s back to back would be a tough thing to do.”
Marriotts Ridge coach Marcus Lewis called the win “bittersweet” because he knows how much his players enjoy competing. He also understands the health risks associated with resuming play, whether it be a few hours or a few days after the initial delay.
First-year Mt. Hebron head coach Jack Kinloch also acknowledged the difficulty of rescheduling but wished his team received a chance to mount a comeback.
“You take out the pick six and the punt that was dropped and downed, we’re in that game,” Kinloch said. “If it hadn’t been called, we were driving — we had the ball on the 46, first down — we could have gotten a score, and the game could have been different if it hadn’t been called. So, it is what it is.”
Mistakes on offense and special teams overshadowed a promising effort from the Mt. Hebron defense, which allowed 23 yards of total offense over three drives.
First came the botched punt during which the punter kneeled to corral a low snap deep in Vikings’ territory. The Mustangs took over on the 8-yard line, and on the next play, sophomore Kameron Young barreled into the end zone. After the teams combined for four straight three-and-outs to start the game, the Mustangs surged ahead at the 5:04 mark of the first quarter.
Late in the period, Young set up the Mustangs’ second score with a lengthy punt return. With the ball on the Vikings’ 9-yard line, Young rushed twice before senior Gavin Ross capped the rapid drive with a 1-yard quarterback sneak.
The pair of conversions were more than enough for a Mustangs’ defense that allowed one first down.
“Offensively, we struggled a little bit, but we took advantage of the short field that they gave us,” Lewis said. “But defensively, I thought we were on point tonight.”
No play demonstrated that dominance more than Robinson Davis’ interception during the final minute of the opening frame. He reached over the receiver to snag the pass, then sprinted towards the left sideline with several blockers ahead of him. With a few defenders in pursuit, Davis sharply cut back and sprinted across the goal line.
It marked Marriotts Ridge’s third touchdown in less than five minutes and served as the final score in a shortened victory.
“We kind of knew that we’ve given it to them pretty good the last few years, so we kind of came out knowing that we were going to have the upper hand a little bit,” Robinson said. “We just had to focus and make sure we did everything right. So, when we did, everything just came together, and we had some pretty easy yards and a good touchdown.”
Elsewhere around the league, two other games finished in similar fashion.
Glenelg and Centennial made it through a quarter and a half when lightning delayed the action, but the Gladiators were awarded a victory after building a 37-0 lead.
River Hill was awarded a victory over Hammond, as the Hawks held a 35-0 lead at the time of their delay.
Long Reach and Atholton are tied at halftime, 13-13, and will complete the second half Saturday at 7 p.m.
Wilde Lake leads Reservoir, 7-0, at halftime, and that game will be completed Monday at noon at Wilde Lake.
Howard has a 29-0 lead over Oakland Mills at halftime. The two teams will resume Saturday at 7:30 p.m.
Marriotts Ridge (1-0) — 21 0 X X — 21
Mt. Hebron (0-1) — 0 0 X X — 0
MR: Kameron Young 8-yard run, Jack Liparini kick [7-0]
MR: Gavin Ross 1-yard run, Jack Liparini kick [14-0]
MR: Robinson Davis 57-yard interception return touchdown, Jack Liparini kick [21-0]
Glenelg (1-0) — 30 7 X X — 37
Centennial (0-1) — 0 0 X X — 0
The game was called midway through the second quarter due to inclement weather. Glenelg was awarded the victory.
G: Kyle Dry 85-yard kick return, Chris Retzbach kick [7-0]
G: Wande Owens 13-yard run, Retzbach kick [14-0]
G: Owens 27-yard run, Retzbach kick [21-0]
G: Tyler Reiff 55-yard pass to Drew Sotka, Retzbach kick [28-0]
G: Team safety [30-0]
G: Michael Doughty 7-yard run, Retzbach kick [37-0]
River Hill (1-0) — 14 21 X X — 35
Hammond (0-1) — 0 0 X X — 0
The game was called late in the second quarter due to inclement weather. River Hill was awarded the victory.
RH: Michael Crisitello 7-yard run, Santiago Bryant kick [7-0]
RH: Robby Windsor 27-yard pass to Beau Brade, Bryan kick [14-0]
RH: Windsor 19-yard pass to Spencer Brockdorff, Bryant kick [21-0]
RH: Windsor 1-yard run, Bryant kick [28-0]
RH: Windsor 30-yard pass to Brockdorff, Bryant kick [35-0]