River Hill springs upset, 20-19

Barnes' late kickoff return hands Oak. Mills 1st loss

Football

High Schools

October 05, 2003|By Rick Belz | Rick Belz,SUN STAFF

For the second straight week, River Hill staged a miraculous finish to steal a victory from one of Howard County's top football teams.

And for the second straight week, the Hawks' hero was Rogers Barnes.

In a battle of undefeated teams, Barnes returned a kickoff 80 yards for a touchdown to beat No. 3-ranked Oakland Mills before a large crowd yesterday at the Scorpions' homecoming celebration, 20-19.

The game-winning play began with 66 seconds remaining as Barnes scooped up a low bouncing kick, cut down the left sideline, received critical blocks from Ben Nowak and and Kyle Ramseur, and outraced Oakland Mills speedster Tony Cole to the end zone.

Ryan Deiter, who had missed two field-goal attempts and an extra-point attempt, then kicked the game-winning extra point, but only after a 5-yard illegal procedure penalty against the Hawks.

"I looked back to see where Cole was and just ran as fast as I could," said Barnes, whose 55-yard touchdown catch with 55 seconds left last week forced overtime against Long Reach in a game River Hill won in four overtimes.

It was the senior's first kickoff return for a touchdown, and allowed the No. 15 Hawks (5-0 overall, 5-0 league) to win for the first time on Oakland Mills' field and to pay back the Scorpions (4-1, 3-1) for spoiling River Hill's homecoming a season ago. The 5-0 start is the best ever for a River Hill team.

The return followed a 76-yard touchdown pass from Scorpions quarterback Nick Finney to Anthony Evans. Oakland Mills missed the extra-point kick, however, a miss that proved costly.

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