There wasn't much variety in Joppatowne's play selection last night against Aberdeen. But variety mattered little, as the Mariners beat host Aberdeen for the first time in nine years, 38-18.
The Mariners gave the ball to Chad Gary 25 times, and the 5-foot-9, 165-pound tailback responded with 173 yards rushing to lead them to their sixth win.
"He is our workhorse," said Joppatowne coach Karlis Larson. "And we'll have to mix it up more as teams start to key on him."
Aberdeen (3-3) did key on Gary, and slowed him somewhat in the second half. But when it did, fullback Rodney Briscoe broke loose for 116 yards and two second-half touchdowns to put the game out of reach.
Joppatowne (6-0) scored first on a 1-yard keeper by quarterback Darnell Everett. The score came on a fourth-down play and capped a drive that began when Chris Webber intercepted a pass at the Aberdeen 46.
Aberdeen tied the score 6-6 early in the second quarter after Mike Cromwell returned an interception 69 yards to the 10. Quarterback Terrence Washington scored two plays later on a 1-yard run.
Briscoe scored the first of his three touchdowns seven minutes later on an 8-yard run that was set up by eight straight carries by Gary.
Aberdeen's defensive team tied the score just before halftime, when Mike Grant recovered an errant pitchout in the end zone. Joppatowne had elected not to run out the clock from its 5. The teams went to halftime tied 12-12.
Aberdeen's offense never found its momentum. The Eagles went 24 minutes without a first down in the second and third quarters.
Meanwhile, Joppatowne running backs kept breaking for big gains in the second half. Briscoe had circled right end and raced 75 yards to make it 24-12. Alonzo McDowell added the only conversion of the game on a pitchout to raise the lead to 14 points.