In the 10 years since C. Milton Wright High School opened, its football team never had beaten Edgewood's -- until last night. The Mustangs broke the drought with two dramatic defensive plays, beating the visiting Rams, 7-6.
The game, which kept Wright in first place in the Harford Count league, was not decided until the final 1 minute, 25 seconds when Wright defenders smothered Rams quarterback Keith Kimmel as he tried to pass for a two-point conversion.
The other big play came late in the first quarter when defensiv end Zi Shum blocked an Edgewood punt. The ball rolled dead at the Edgewood 12, and on the next play, Keith Batten, the Harford league's leading rusher, ran into the end zone.
"They [the defense] won the ballgame for us," said fifth-yea coach Steve Harward. "That blocked punt was a big break for us. Defensively this has to be our best game ever." The win came on Harward's 35th birthday.
The Edgewood defense was equally stifling. Both team managed to gain only 91 yards apiece on the ground. Edgewood quarterback Kimmel completed 5 of 9 passes for 112 yards, but his team's 19-point-per-game offense produced only near misses until the final two minutes. One of them came with 8:57 to go when Lawrence Worthington returned a punt 35 yards, skirted the final Wright defenders to open field, and tripped.
Finally, on a third-and-nine play with two minutes left, Kimmel hi Brian Johnson for 35 yards to set up the Edgewood touchdown. Worthington ran into the end zone from the nine with 1:31 remaining.
Edgewood, now 4-2, attempted the two-point conversion, whic ended under a charge of Mustangs led by Chris Shue. Shue, a senior, led Wright defenders with 10 tackles, two of them unassisted.