Unbeaten Redskins are one step away

Edmondson out to drop Urbana, pick up 2A title

November 26, 1999|By Lem Satterfield | Lem Satterfield,SUN STAFF

Raytron Leak can't walk the halls of Edmondson High without being stopped or recognized. Teachers and classmates congratulate him on the Redskins' success.

Edmondson, ranked No. 2, is the only area team headed to the state football championships, and Leak is a 6-foot-2, 230-pound Division I prospect.

"This is exciting. This is what high schools want. This is what high school should be all about," Leak said. "We're fortunate to have the talent and motivation from Coach [Pete] Pompey," Leak said. "More students are coming to watch games. We have the support of the faculty. We're always getting hugs. They love us."

Pompey said he expects Edmondson fans to arrive by the bus load tomorrow at the University of Maryland's Byrd Stadium, where the Redskins face the defending Class 2A champion, Urbana of Frederick.

The Redskins enter their first state title game with an 18-game winning streak, including 12-0 this season. The Hawks, ranked fifth in the state by the Associated Press, have won 24 consecutive games, including 11 this season.

Edmondson becomes the city's third program to reach a state football title game since city schools joined the state association in 1993. Poly was a runner-up to Seneca Valley in '93. Dunbar made the championship game three times from 1993 to 1997, winning twice.

Tomorrow's game will feature two of the state's better quarterbacks in Edmondson's 6-3, 200-pound Eddie Colbert and Urbana's Zack Mills.

Colbert is being recruited by, among others, Maryland, Virginia Tech, Georgia Tech and Syracuse. He's rated No. 33 among the nation's top 100 Division I quarterbacks by Rivals100 recruiting service.

Leak, who has 37 touchdowns, is the highest-rated Maryland running back at No. 30. Michigan, Maryland, Nebraska, Virginia Tech, Georgia Tech, Virginia and Rhode Island have offered scholarships to Leak.

"The attention is nice, but we had an idea we could be good," Leak said. "But Coach Pompey took us even farther than we dreamed. He doesn't just coach play-by-play. Half of our practice is talking about life. When he tells us something, we believe."

Pompey, 59, made the Redskins believe last weekend against Howard County champion Howard High, when the Redskins faced their first halftime deficit of the year, 7-0, only to rebound for a 37-15 victory.

"The kids were puzzled, but they weren't down," Pompey said. "They just needed something to turn the tide. I told them, `Let's see what we're made of.' "

A 90-yard kickoff return by Justus McLeod set off a scoring frenzy that included 22 points in the first 2: 56 of the third quarter.

Junior Darryl McCray rushed for 97 yards and two scores, and junior Gerald Dorsey ran for another. Junior Danny Dixon caught a 37-yard touchdown pass, and Antwan Stevens recovered a fumble and had a sack.

Senior Jemiah Green also recovered a fumble that led to a score, as did Leak, whose team-high nine tackles were followed by eight tackles from junior linebacker Jason Murphy.

Pompey earned career win No. 182, tying him with Patterson's Roger Wrenn as Baltimore City's winningest active coaches.

"When we're down, from one person making a good play, it helps the next person gain confidence. We always look to the next guy and say, `You're next,' " Leak said. "One person can make a difference, but we know that one person doesn't make a team."

Pompey said his Redskins spent time this week watching video of the Hawks' dismantling one of the area's best teams last weekend. In its 45-6 semifinal rout of No. 4 Hereford (11-1), Urbana's starters needed 23 plays in their first seven possessions to score 45 points.

"They're a well-oiled machine, with a coach in Dave Carruthers who came from winning traditions at Seneca Valley and Linganore," Pompey said.

Edmondson also has been explosive, scoring 62 second-half points in its playoff wins over Dunbar, 39-6, and Howard.

"A lot of people feel we're underdogs because this is the first time the school has been in this situation," Leak said. "But we feel like if we play the way Coach Pompey wants us to, we will continue our success."

Schedule

Today

Football

State finals at Byrd Stadium

Class 1A: Brunswick vs. Forestville, 3 p.m.

Class 4A: Gaithersburg vs. Eleanor Roosevelt, 7 p.m.

Boys basketball

Pocomoke at Gibbons, 11 a.m.

Annapolis Christian at Riverdale Baptist, 3: 30 p.m.

Tomorrow

Football

State finals at Byrd Stadium

Class 2A: Urbana vs. Edmondson, 3 p.m.

Class 3A: Thomas Stone vs. Seneca Valley, 7 p.m.

Girls basketball

Pompei at Beth Tfiloh, 5: 15 p.m.

City in the states

How Baltimore City teams have fared in the state football playoffs since joining the Maryland Public Schools Athletic Association in 1993:

Team ...................W-L ...............Summary

Dunbar ...............10-4 ...............5 semis, 3 finals, 2 titles

Edmondson ..........2-0 ...............1 semi, 1 final

Poly ......................3-4 ...............2 semis, 1 final

Patterson..............2-6 ...............2 semis

City .......................1-2 ...............1 semi

Lake .....................1-3 ...............1 semi

Walbrook ..............0-1

Forest Park ..........0-2

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