C. Milton Wright scored twice in the final minute in a 21-0 shutout of host Joppatowne last night and clinched at least a tie for the Harford County League championship.
Israel Sostrin, a 5-foot-7, 180-pound senior, led the Mustangs both offensively and defensively to their ninth consecutive win. He rushed for 51 yards in 11 carries, led his team in tackles, and scored on an interception.
With nine tackles, three of them unassisted, Sostrin was the key man in a Wright defense that held the Mariners to five first downs and 103 total yards. Wright stopped Joppatowne's quick-footed running back Kilo Mack, holding him to 40 yards on 14 carries.
The win moved Wright to within one game of its first league title and undefeated season. But the victory was not an artistic one.
The Mustangs were penalized 10 times for 115 yards. Joppatowne drew 10 penalties for 80 yards. The miscues stalled several drives by both teams.
The game began with a display of effective offense by both teams. Joppatowne moved 59 yards on its first possession, consuming 8 minutes, 30 seconds before Damon Davies' fourth-and-seven pass fell incomplete.
Wright then took over at the 21 and rolled to a touchdown in just 2:30. Zi Shum and Kenny Batten raced through holes for gains of 43 and 38 yards, respectively, before quarterback Jeff Hawk scored from the 1 with 4:15 remaining in the first quarter.
The game then became a defensive battle for most of three quarters until Hawk scored again from the half-yard line with one minute remaining in the game.
Wright came back with its third touchdown just seconds later when Sostrin picked off a pass at the 30 and raced untouched into the end zone.
Batten, who carried the ball sparingly during the second half due to an injury, was the game's leading rusher with 93 yards on 20 carries.