The stark contrast between Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association A and B Conference football was never more evident than yesterday at Gilman.
Defending A Conference tri-champ and No. 3 Gilman was victorious, 36-0, over St. Mary's, a B Conference title hopeful, in the season opener for both.
With junior running back Jordan Love leading all rushers with 81 yards on 11 attempts, including the game's first touchdown from the 12-yard line, the host Greyhounds rolled up 185 yards on the ground.
Gilman used a trio of senior quarterbacks to go 8-for-11 for 149 yards and compile a total offense of 334 yards. Rick Bowie was 4-for-4 for 78 yards, with Jerrell Diggs catching four passes for 108 yards and a 30-yard score.
Despite the lopsided score, both coaches said they got a lot out of the game.
Gilman coach Biff Poggi was ecstatic that he got to play all 67 of his players, including 15 sophomores, while Saints coach Mike Clay's 31-man squad escaped with no major injuries and a positive attitude.
"Our guys need to learn when you make mistakes, good teams capitalize," Clay said. "I think our defense shined at times, and offensively we're there"
"Our guys realize they were going against Goliath."
Dontra Peters ran for 55 yards and junior quarterback Peter Athens, a transfer from Northern-Calvert, completed nine of 15 passes for 65 yards to provide bright spots for the Saints.
Calling it "a real team win," Poggi used his committee of senior quarterbacks in Bowie, starter Jake Tunney and Derrick Burnett.
"We played 67 guys, which is a great win," Poggi said.
"We're going to have a pretty good team this year, real good the next couple years. We plan on playing all three of those quarterbacks all year."
Senior linebacker Joey Ehrmann and senior lineman Chris Burnett led the Greyhounds' defense. Burnett had a first-period safety for a 9-0 Gilman lead, and Bowie threw his two scoring passes in the second quarter, the second to Ehrmann playing tight end for a commanding 22-0 lead at halftime.
"We were very aggressive up front, and said from the beginning we wanted to start fast and really penetrate," Burnett said. "We have a lot more depth this year."
Ehrmann noted that the Greyhounds "will enjoy this win tonight, but starting tomorrow morning we've got to get ready for DeMatha."
The Stags visit Gilman at 1 p.m. next Saturday.