The last time Patterson High played host to an important Maryland Scholastic Association B Conference game, the Clippers couldn't do anything right.
Yesterday, they couldn't do anything wrong.
In coach Roger Wrenn's terminology, the 14th-ranked Clippers "hit on all cylinders" and demolished Carver, 34-6, to draw nearer to a title-game showdown against Dunbar, the only team that has embarrassed them.
This battle for supremacy in Division I of the conference was every bit as lopsided as Dunbar's 30-0 romp over Patterson three weeks ago.
The Bears (5-3, 5-2) fumbled away the opening kickoff -- leading to a Patterson touchdown three plays later -- were intercepted six times and failed to score until the final play of the game, when quarterback Anthony Miller averted the shutout with an 11-yard run.
"They did a very good job of scouting us," said Carver coach Ken Shell. "And this team is basically sophomores and juniors. You just take your lumps and keep on going."
Bill Lewis did the advance work for Patterson (6-1, 4-1), and the result was a smothering of the Bears receivers whenever Miller tried to operate out of the team's shotgun offense. He was forced to scramble often, and when he did pass, a defender always seemed to be in the proper place.
"We were excited and looking forward to this kickoff," said Wrenn. "We functioned well as a team."
The first of John Sauer's scoring runs after a 23-yard drive started the rout. Two drives later, the Bears botched a punt attempt and Willie McGirt struck on the Clippers' first play, throwing a 25-yard touchdown on asideline fly pattern to Stacey Plater.
Another conversion kick by Ronnie Green made it 14-0, and Green followed by launching the ensuing kickoff into the end zone, something he did all afternoon to deny Carver field position.
The Bears were not out of the game yet, but they soon were. They controlled the ball for 16 plays on a march from their 20 to the Clippers' 5, but the drive ended in mass frustration when intense defensive pressure forced Miller to dump the ball and Patterson tackle Anthony Godack intercepted at the 14.
A gimmick call, with guard Keith Crowe carrying, netted 76 yards on the first play after the interception and three plays later, Sauer was in the end zone again. A pass to Plater for the conversion made it 22-0.
"We run some unusual plays," said Wrenn. "Our kids like doing that. It makes practice fun."
After a trade-off of interceptions, Carver used some quick-hitting plays to penetrate to the Clippers' 10 with halftime approaching, but the same bugaboo appeared. Plater intercepted for Patterson and the Bears never got close again until the game-ending possession.
Sauer finished with 141 yards on 16 carries, and McGirt passed effectively enough to keep the offense from becoming one-dimensional.
The game was 20 minutes late starting after Carver's bus was delayed in cross-town traffic.
"We didn't want him [Miller] to hit us with the long ones," said Wrenn. "They moved the ball at times between the 20s, but our secondary played very well when they got close."
If all goes predictably, Patterson will get another crack at Dunbar on Nov. 21 in the B Conference championship game at Poly.
Carver .. .0 0 0 6 -- 6
Patterson 14 8 0 12 -- 34
P -- Sauer 5 run (Green kick)
P -- Plater 25 pass from McGirt (Green kick)
P -- Sauer 2 run (Plater pass from McGirt)
P -- Sauer 1 run (kick blocked)
P -- Smith 31 interception return (kick failed)
-- Miller 11 run (pass failed)