Surprising Westminster repels Old Mill charge Owls, 3-0, score early, then hold on for 28-25 win

September 19, 1998|By John W. Stewart | John W. Stewart,SUN STAFF

Westminster staked a claim to area football respectability last night, holding off visiting Old Mill, 28-25, although the Patriots made it close with a pair of second-half touchdowns.

The triumph gave the Owls a 3-0 start and enabled interim coach Scott Tobias to become the first of the school's nine coaches -- dating back to 1947 -- to start his initial season with three straight wins.

With the victory, witnessed by a better-than-average Westminster crowd of 1,700, the Owls got a clean sweep of its Anne Arundel foes, having previously beaten North County and Severna Park.

Westminster scored three successive touchdowns to build a 28-13 halftime lead, all the scoring coming in the second quarter. It marked the third straight game it had taken a commanding lead by half time.

Such was the home team's first-half domination that Old Mill ran only nine plays from scrimmage, including an interception and a lost fumble prior to the final four minutes. At the half, the leaders had 202 total yards to 34 for the Patriots.

This followed some on-field adjustments by Westminster's offensive line which had not prepared for the six-man front shown by the Patriots. Still, seniors Manny Rivera and Lucas Geiman and juniors Mike McFeeley, John Fitzgerald, and Kevin Riley controlled the line of scrimmage.

The Owls scored first on a short run by sophomore Mike McGinnis, and after Old Mill had tied it on the return of a fumble recovery by Jason Galloway, the home side took charge. Durden capped a four-play, 38-yard drive with a nine-yard run; quarterback Scott Carnegie ran 13 yards following a pick by sophomore Jemal Smalls, and Smalls ran 23 yards after Fitzgerald and Eric Westervelt combined on a fumble recovery.

The Anne Arundel County team got the only score of the third quarter, closing to 28-19 on a 42-yard run by senior Brandon White. The 5-foot-11, 165-pounder was one of three speedsters to keep the Westminster defenders focused on their task.

Junior Jason Galloway and senior Toney Twitty were the other two who played a large part in the comeback. Twitty provided fourth-quarter heroics, breaking loose for a 66-yard touchdown dash on a fourth-and-10 call.

"This makes you speechless," said Brad Durden, a sophomore running back, who scored one touchdown and was given the ball repeatedly late in the fourth quarter as the Owls maintained ball control.

Pub Date: 9/19/98

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