Aberdeen hammers Oakland Mills Scorpions' mistakes lead to Eagles' 33-6 rout


Oakland Mills coach Ken Hovet knew his team would be inexperienced this season, but he never dreamed it would make as many mistakes as it did yesterday in its 33-6 opening loss to No. 12 Aberdeen.

"We had a lot of guys starting their first varsity game and we looked like it," Hovet said. "We looked scared and tentative, missed a lot of tackles and made about 50 mental errors. It was the worst an Oakland Mills team has looked in five years."

Aberdeen (1-0), which led 20-0 in the first quarter, took advantage of a long list of Oakland Mills mistakes to rack up 389 total yards.

The Scorpions (0-1) had a punt blocked at their 23-yard line to set up Aberdeen's second touchdown.

Then the Scorpions fumbled at their 30-yard line to pave the way for Aberdeen's third touchdown.

On each of those three Eagles touchdown drives, runs by fullback E. J. Henderson were the big plays. Henderson finished with 98 yards on 12 carries.

"Their defense was exploding off the ball too far into our backfield, their linebackers were standing flatfooted and their defensive backs were tentative, like they were going for strips," Henderson said. "It was easy to run by them.

Aberdeen quarterback Andy Gasdia, who carried eight times for 54 yards and two touchdowns, praised his offensive line. "We're not big, but we're quick and we trap well," he said.

Oakland Mills mounted a 76-yard drive on eight plays to score its touchdown early in the second quarter. Fardan Carter broke a 28-yard run by cutting back against the flow. Carter carried 12 times for 27 yards. Bryan Cole led Oakland Mills with 69 yards on 11 carries.

"Oakland Mills trapped us well on that drive, but then we started blitzing and that stopped them," said Gasdia, who also played defensive back.

On its next possession Aberdeen got sloppy and gave Oakland Mills a chance to get back in the game by fumbling at its 35-yard line. But Oakland Mills gave the ball right back on an interception.

Aberdeen fumbled again at its own 28, and Oakland Mills moved the ball to the 11. A penalty nullified a first-down run by Carter on fourth down, however, and quarterback T. J. Welsh was thrown for a loss on the next play.

"If we had scored then it might have been a different game," Carter said. "Aberdeen is a good team and they just beat us. We have to go back to the drawing board."

Aberdeen's Cliff Simmons, who scored two touchdowns and had 128 yards rushing on nine carries, broke an 80-yard touchdown run on the third play of the second half.

Pub Date: 9/10/96

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