At first, Saturday night’s season-opening football game between McDonogh and St. Vincent Pallotti was changed to a scrimmage, because not enough Pallotti players had been through the required number of practices before playing a game.
Then, it was called off completely.
As the teams warmed up for the scrimmage, Pallotti players crossed midfield, apparently talking trash to McDonogh players. McDonogh coach Dom Damico pulled his team off the field and opted not to play.
Pallotti athletic director Pat Courtemanche, also the chairman of the Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association football committee, said he wasn’t sure whether the game would be forfeited or just considered no-game.
Damico said he didn’t care whether the Eagles won by forfeit or the game was considered no-game for both. The team was taken off the field to make sure nothing further happened during the scrimmage.
The game presented an interesting dynamic with the defending MIAA B Conference champion Pallotti, which blew through the conference by an average of 39 points last fall, taking on A Conference power McDonogh in Owings Mills. Pallotti coach Ian Thomas said his team is striving to eventually move into the A Conference.
However, six of his players were unable to complete the 14 days of practice to meet the state’s heat acclimatization requirements before an actual game is played. They missed days for doctor’s appointments or going out of town, Thomas said.
“The league made the choice to start [practice] 14 days before the first open date,” Thomas said of the Aug. 10 starting date. “The guys had no room for error for missing practices, so there were guys who only missed one practice and didn’t have 14 practices, so unfortunately we couldn’t play. They were mostly guys in positions that we were lacking [depth] and we would have been forced to put freshmen in and I don’t think that would have been a safe thing to do.”
CALVERT HALL 45, SILVER OAK 0: The Cardinals opened their season with the 100th win in coach Donald Davis’ career.
In his 11th season at Calvert Hall, he has won 70 games to go with the 30 he won during four years at Cardinal Gibbons. Davis said the day was special because he was surrounded by family and friends who came out to see the milestone victory.
“It’s not even so much about the number as today was like a great reminder of my journey. I got to share it with so many people that I care about,” said Davis, a Calvert Hall graduate. “I had a ton of former players here from Calvert Hall and Cardinal Gibbons. My high school football coach, Lou [Ekerl] was here and Jim Margraff, my college coach [Johns Hopkins], stopped by. My family was here and a bunch of my friends. Moments like this don’t happen without these folks anyway.”
The Cardinals got off to a quick start when Anthony Anderson recovered a fumble for the first touchdown. Pierce Robinson later ran an interception back 99 yards for a touchdown. Wayne Williams and Mike Neal also had interceptions
.“Our defense came to play, which we expected,” Davis said. “We were a little slow to get out of the gate on offense, but we were able to pick it up.”
Sean Tucker, Caleb Biggers, Ethan McCarthy and Mike Campbell scored rushing touchdowns and Brandon Reynolds added a 27-yard field goal.
ST. FRANCES 41, CANADA PREP 0: Jalon Jones ran for a touchdown and passed for another as St. Frances (1-0) eased to victory at William F. “Sugar” Cane Stadium. Randy Fields had an 18-yard touchdown reception and Osman Savage and Joachim Bangda scored on short runs for the Panthers. Jordan Toles returned a fumble 23 yards for a score.
GONZAGA (D.C.) 38, GILMAN 0: The Greyhounds’ season opened on a tough note as the visiting Zags rolled.