With focus on the playing field, Patterson topples Carver, 28-6

Players from both teams join hands before game


High Schools

September 15, 2001|By Lem Satterfield | Lem Satterfield,SUN STAFF

As a first sergeant in a Dundalk-based National Guard army reserve unit, Dave Collier officiated yesterday's Patterson-Carver football game knowing that he could be called into action against an unknown enemy at any moment.

"We were put on alert four hours after the first aircraft hit the building in New York, so it could be in the next five minutes or two days from now," said Collier, 44, referring to Tuesday's terrorist attacks.

"I've been in the military 24 years," Collier, a married father of two. He said a cousin, who worked in New York, is missing. "We missed the last two wars in Grenada and in Saudi Arabia, but the president's asking for too many troops right now for us not to be called up, so I don't think we're going to miss this one."

Even as she watched her students celebrate their 28-6 victory, Patterson principal Laura D'Anna's mind was elsewhere. D'Anna, who called for a five-minute silent period of reflection during the school day, said "My neighbors, two doors down, lost their daughter. She was on the plane that went down in Pennsylvania. I think I'll be forever affected by it."

Before the game, the two teams lined up, approached each other and joined hands in the middle of the field. Then, a moment of silence was observed "for the victims of the terrorist attacks," said Carver principal, Michael Plitt. "It was very moving."

Players for Patterson (2-0) wore decals of the American flag on the fronts of their helmets. "It was something that the players initiated," said Clippers coach Roger Wrenn, whose six-member staff followed suit.

"It was a real shock to us, knowing that could happen anywhere in the United States," said senior Jeffrey Smith, who rushed for fourth-quarter scores of 8 and 16 yards and had 139 of his team's 361 yards on the ground. "It's so close, being in D.C., I've been watching it on television every night."

Sophomore Thomas Smith, no relation to Jeffery, gained 74 yards and had the Clippers' first score, a 33-yard run, for a 6-0 lead with 7:01 left in the first half. It was 12-0 - the halftime score - after running back Antwoine Clayborne crossed the goal line from three yards out. Clayborne finished with 108 yards.

Carver quarterback Kenard Fraction (10-for-15, 150 yards) connected on a 46-yard, play-action pass to Anthony Mason, bringing the Bears to within, 12-6, with 4:43 left in the third quarter.

But the Bears (1-1) failed to capitalize on a fumble recovery by Marlon Taylor (13 tackles) at the Patterson 33, throwing an interception two plays later to Jerald Jones - one of two by the Clippers' defensive back.

"As much sympathy as I feel for the individuals who suffered losses, recreation is part of education, and these gentlemen really need this as an educational tool," said James Boyd, an Internal Revenue Service employee in downtown Baltimore.

"It was important to resume the normal routine," D'Anna said. "They have a lot of apprehensions, and any signal from the adults that their world isn't quite right simply enhances the fear."

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