This was supposed to be a close game, but No. 15 Aberdeen wouldn't have it.
Backed by Dondre Gilliam's three touchdowns and 109 yards rushing on 14 carries, the visiting Eagles (6-1, 5-1) trounced Fallston (4-3, 2-3) last night, 41-0, in a Harford County League mismatch.
"I give the credit to my line because they were the ones opening holes that I could have driven a truck through," said Gilliam, referring to offensive linemen Paul Gasdia, Scipio Osborne, Eric Morgan, Joe Stegemann and Nate Stewart.
"We got a wake-up call last Friday night against Joppatowne [which won, 30-16] and we picked up some more momentum tonight."
Gilliam put the Eagles on the board first just 4:47 into the game as he ran into a blocker and than found the end zone from eight yards.
From his defensive tackle spot, Morgan forced a fumble on Fallston's ensuing possession and Osborne smothered it, giving the Eagles more good field position at the Cougars' 25-yard-line.
Six plays later, Gilliam, a 6-foot, 158-pound junior, trotted around the left side for a 7-yard score that helped put the visitors ahead, 14-0.
After forcing Fallston's offense to punt after gaining two yards on three plays, Aberdeen's offense stepped up and delivered yet another crushing blow.
On the opening play of the drive, junior tailback Keith Marshall broke loose off-tackle and raced 68 yards for a touchdown that put the visitors up, 21-0, at the half.
Gilliam's third and final score came from four yards early in the third quarter and completed a 10-play, 2-yard scoring drive.
Aberdeen started inserting its reserves midway through the third period and continued to widen the margin.
Junior Doug Gordon hauled in an 8-yard touchdown pass from Terrance Washington to help make it 34-0 and backup quarterback Hercules Murray scored on a keeper from the 1 to provide the final margin.
Fallston's offense, which came into the game averaging 273 yards rushing, was held to 60 yards on the ground and 73 yards of total offense.
"We knew Fallston had a good running game and they had just beaten John Carroll, Joppatowne and Northeast so we knew they would be good," said Aberdeen coach Kevin Reilly after watching his team come up with a total of 314 yards on the ground.
"They have a good offensive line and some good running backs but our defense came out and shut them down early and that seemed to inspire our offense."
Heading up Aberdeen's stingy defensive unit were Curvine Ridgley, Morgan and Eugene Norton with, eight, seven and six tackles, respectively.
"Fallston has been on a roll lately but my kids really came out ready to play tonight and we needed that," said Reilly.
"We go into every game expecting a battle and we expected one tonight, it just didn't happen."