Oakland Mills thought it was playing five men dow yesterday.
"It felt like we were playing Atholton and the five officials," said Scorpions running back Jake Daft, who scored two touchdowns. "But we worked things out."
Overcoming 12 penalties for 110 yards, Oakland Mills crushed host Atholton, 28-0.
Five of those penalties occurred at critical points in the first half when the Scorpions (4-2, 2-0 in the Howard County League) owned only a 7-0 lead.
Two penalties on Oakland Mills' punt return unit allowed the Raiders (4-2, 0-2) to continue drives. Three consecutive penalties on one Oakland Mills possession forced the Scorpions 30 yards back after they moved to Atholton's 39-yard line.
"Those penalties were getting a little ridiculous," Oakland Mills coach Ken Hovet said. "We were executing so well out there."
The best execution was accomplished by the Scorpions' offensive line. It opened gaping holes for Daft and created a safe pocket for quarterback Irving Conwell.
Oakland Mills accumulated 450 yards of total offense, including 127 yards rushing and 53 yards receiving by Daft.
"Our whole playbook worked out there today," Daft said. "It was those penalties that held us back."
As the penalties restrained Oakland Mills, the Scorpions' defense did the same to Atholton. Oakland Mills held the Raiders to 158 yards of total offense and forced three turnovers.
The Scorpions have given up only one touchdown in their two county games while securing their second shutout of the season.
"It's hard to convince a team with two losses that they are good," Hovet said. "Games like these really help."
Conwell, who completed eight of 10 passes for 157 yards and two touchdowns, said the team had something to prove.
"This was an example for the rest of the county," Conwell said. "We wanted to show the county that we played a tough schedule early. I think we showed them that today."
Oakland Mills also displayed how quickly it can strike. Three of the four touchdowns were scored on drives of four plays or less. Those three drives took a total of 3:53 off the clock.
Conwell, who had 44 yards passing taken away because of penalties, said the game plan was to open up the offense.
Establishing the run early, Oakland Mills didn't attempt a pass until its 17th play of the game. However, the Scorpions then used the play-action pass to freeze the defensive backs.
Conwell hit Sam Smith in the right corner of the end zone to cap a three-play, 70-yard drive with seven seconds left in the first half to put the Scorpions ahead 15-0.
After back-to-back runs by Daft, Conwell connected with sophomore Fardan Carter for a 26-yard touchdown pass to end a four-play, 61-yard drive and push the lead to 28-0. Carter finished with 65 yards rushing and 59 yards receiving.
Glenelg 31, Mount Hebron 6
Jeremy Lignelli scored two touchdowns, leading Glenelg (2-3) over visiting Mount Hebron (0-5). Sean Lookingbill completed eight of 14 passes for 152 yards, including a 19-yard touchdown pass to Brian Frederick.
Wilde Lake 21, Hammond 14
Tony Jackson scored on a 1-yard run in the fourth quarter as host Wilde Lake (2-3) rallied past Hammond (3-2).
Hammond led, 14-0, in the second quarter before touchdowns )) by Dain Lewis and Alan Anderson pulled the Wildecats even at 14 in the third quarter.
Lewis finished with 162 yards and Anderson had 102 as Wilde Lake outgained the Bears, 396-66.
Gilman 35, St. Mary's 8
R.C. Kauffman rushed for 139 yards and David Biddison added 128 yards, leading No. 6 Gilman (3-1) past visiting and No. 8 St. Mary's (4-1).
Kauffman and Biddison each scored two touchdowns as the Greyhounds totaled 362 yards in offense.
Severn 48, Spalding 6
John Vereen rushed 10 times for 191 yards and four touchdowns as No. 11 Severn (4-1) defeated Spalding (2-3).