McDonogh wasn't looking past St. Mary's yesterday as much as looking to go right through the Saints.
"We used this game to prepare for our next three [A Conference rivals] Calvert Hall, Loyola and Mount St. Joseph," said running back Nick Marshall. "We wanted to take it to [St. Mary's]."
The Eagles did that in a 27-0 Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association nonconference rout at the Saints' Weems Whalen Field, as quarterback Rory Sanborn used his talented receivers and the defense of McDonogh (2-1) clamped down on one of Anne Arundel County's premier rushers.
The Saints' Donta Sylvae, a 1,000-yard rusher last season, had only 34 yards against defenseman Cameron Goldberg and Kelly Cox, who had one sack each, Hakeem Sule (fumble recovery) and Tommy Cooper.
"It was all about defense," said defensive back Bryn Holmes, who once dropped Sylvae for a 3-yard loss. "We stepped up in this game. And when the other team can't score, obviously, they can't win."
McDonogh scored behind Sanborn (11-for-14, 187 yards, one touchdown), who sprayed passes to six receivers. He mostly found 6-foot-6 Justin Drummond (four receptions, 35 yards, one touchdown) and 6-3 Darius Heyward-Bey (two catches, 79 yards), the latter being a defending sprint champ in track.
"We have such great athletes as receivers, things open up for me to run," said Marshall, who rushed for 90 yards on just seven carries and scores of 1, 5 and 57 yards.
Tony Lott's 38-yard catch at St. Mary's 18-yard line set up Marshall's second touchdown for a 14-0 halftime lead, and Marshall's third score followed a 9-yard catch by Drummond.
"We can go long ball or short," Sanborn said. "I just throw it up, they go get it."
Drummond easily out-leaped his undersized defender for a 5-yard catch and the game's last touchdown with 2:04 left in the third period. McDonogh's reserves played the rest of the game.
"When you have a 6-6 guy you can throw to against our 5-10 guy, you have the advantage," said St. Mary's coach Mike Codd. "They took the air out of us with a few big plays."
At times, however, the Saints (2-1), of the B Conference, slowed McDonogh.
Such as when St. Mary's Jason Carter knocked down Sanborn's third-period attempt at the Saints' 23-yard line. Or when the Saints' Steve Knopf had a sack.
But St. Mary's twice failed to score - once when Sylvae was stopped shy of a first down on McDonogh's 4-yard line in the second period, and again in the third, when McDonogh's Randall Norton broke up a pass inside the Eagles' 30-yard line.
"We didn't quit," Codd said. "But we needed to cause three or four turnovers to beat McDonogh, and that didn't happen."
McDonogh was without senior center-defensive tackle Von Tourghee, who was serving a one-game suspension after being ejected from McDonogh's win over Haverford, Pa. Ricky Tippett replaced him on defense, and Jesse Sataloff did the same on offense.