Scoring 16 points in 64 seconds, Annapolis swamps Chesapeake Panthers exploit left side, wins 4th straight, 24-0

September 27, 1997|By Rich Scherr | Rich Scherr,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

In the minutes leading to last night's kickoff at Chesapeake High School, the Cougars' marching band played a haunting medley that included eerie works such as "The Death March" and "Phantom of the Opera."

The tunes would have been an appropriate way to signify the Chesapeake football program's recent rise from the ashes. Instead, they served as a precursor to the burial that was to come.

Visiting No. 7-ranked Annapolis broke a scoreless tie with 16 points in the final 1: 04 of the first half, and went on to a 24-0 win to improve to 4-0.

Running back Albert Creek led the Panthers' offense, rushing 22 times for 112 yards, mostly through the left side of the line. The defense then took over, holding Chesapeake to 30 yards in the second half.

"That's as hard as we've played all year," said Annapolis coach Roy Brown. "Chesapeake is a very good football team. Our team knew they had to be ready tonight, and that's about as good as this Annapolis team has played in a long time."

The Cougars (2-2), led by running back Jason Gogolinski, opened the game with a 15-play, 70-yard drive but were short on a fourth-and-5 at the Panthers' 9.

"That hurt a lot," said Cougars coach Tom Kraning. "I give Annapolis a lot of credit. They stepped it up when they had to."

That would prove to be Chesapeake's longest drive of the night.

The game would remain scoreless until late in the half, when Annapolis put together a 13-play, 78-yard drive capped by Creek's 6-yard touchdown run 1: 04 before halftime.

Creek continuously exploited the left side of the Cougars' line, gaining 32 of his 53 first-half yards on the final four plays of the drive. He then ran for the two-point conversion to make it 8-0.

"We lined up our key blockers on that one side, and their defense didn't adjust," Creek said. "We just kept going to that side."

Chesapeake then made a crucial mistake, giving the ball right back on its first play of the next drive, as lineman Mike Donlin intercepted a pass from quarterback Damien Moulden at the Cougars' 26 with 50 seconds left.

Annapolis took full advantage, scoring three plays later on Pete Ludlam's 6-yard pass to Donnell Foote with 27 seconds left. After Creek's two-point conversion run, it was 16-0.

The Panthers opened the third quarter with a nine minute, 51 second drive, culminated by Ludlam's 3-yard keeper followed by yet another-two-point conversion run by Creek to extend to the lead to 24-0.

Pub Date: 9/27/97

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