T. Johnson runs over Owls, 33-0


There were no surprises in this one.

Unbeaten and well-drilled Thomas Johnson ran lumbering fullback Bill Helm right at the Westminster Owls 14 times in the first half for 121 yards and two touchdowns en route to 21-point lead.

Helm then took most of the second half off and watched the Patriots cruise to a 33-0 victory in a Central Maryland Conference mismatch at Westminster.

Thomas Johnson (5-0) was simply too big and too fast on both sides of the ball for the Owls (2-3).

Westminster not only couldn't stop Helm, but the Owls also couldn't move the ball against the talented TJ defense, which swarmed all over the field.

The home team wasn't big enough to run up the middle and it wasn't fast enough to pull off any fancy passing plays to the outside.

"They surprised us with nothing," said Westminster coach Jeff Oeming.

"We were prepared for everything. We knew if we couldn't stop the fullback [Helm], we couldn't stop them. It seemed like he ran the ball 30 to 40 times. I don't remember anybody else carrying the ball."

Actually, TJ running backs Aaron Derwin and Roger Printz combined for 130 yards when Helm didn't have the ball.

Once the Owls realized they couldn't run Chris DeGasperi up the middle, they tried to cross up the Patriots with Steve Kahler throwing the halfback-option pass.

But Kahler was intercepted once and had trouble getting the ball off a couple of other times. The pursuit of the Thomas Johnson defense was just too much for Kahler and Owls quarterback Steve Mays to overcome.

"They were quicker on defense than we expected," said Oeming.

Thomas Johnson now has shut out three straight opponents and has allowed just two touchdowns in five games.

"We should have five shutouts," said TJ coach Ben Wright. "Allegany and Middletown each scored a quick touchdown off us in the first two games of the season."

The Patriots look like a strong contender for the state Class 3A football championship, but Wright warned that it was too early to talk about it.

"City and Poly are pretty good football teams," said the TJ coach. "We'll take them one game at a time."

In the second half, the Patriots showed they also could pass the ball with quarterback Colby Cloude going deep with some well-thrown balls that were dropped by his receivers.

Cloude also took off for a nifty 50-yard touchdown run in the second half after he had scored on a 9-yard run in the first half.

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