Standout QBs to add punch to state semifinal

Swanson and Henderson lead S. Carroll, Aberdeen

Football notebook

High Schools

November 24, 2003|By Lem Satterfield and Jeff Zrebiec | Lem Satterfield and Jeff Zrebiec,SUN STAFF

Erin Henderson leads ninth-ranked Aberdeen into a Class 2A state semifinal against T.J. Swanson and No. 4 South Carroll in what is shaping up to be an exciting quarterback showdown on Friday night at South Carroll.

Each player has led his team to its first playoff victory in school history, not to mention its best season.

Aberdeen (10-1) of Harford County has won eight consecutive games. South Carroll (11-1) of Carroll County has won nine straight.

The 6-foot-4, 225-pound Henderson, who is bound for the University of Maryland, has thrown for 1,458 yards and 17 touchdowns and rushed for 767 yards and seven scores for 2,225 total yards.

In the 57-27 rout of Stephen Decatur in the 2A regional final Friday night, Henderson threw for 160 yards and four touchdowns and rushed for 40 yards and one score. He also doubles as a linebacker.

The 6-3, 210-pound Swanson, who earned second-team All-Metro honors as a defensive back with six interceptions last fall, has passed for 2,287 yards and 28 touchdowns and rushed for 793 yards and 15 scores.

In the 48-26 drubbing of previously unbeaten North Hagerstown (11-1), also on Friday night, Swanson rushed for 181 yards and three touchdowns and passed for 143 yards and another three scores.

With 3,080 total yards of offense, Swanson ranks second on Maryland's single-season list - 314 behind Keith Ricca (3,394) of St. John's-Prospect Hall.

Wright's points

Eastern Tech running back Dietrich Wright is believed to have tied Maryland's all-time record for touchdowns after scoring his 86th (27th of the season) in the 21-7 victory over defending state champion Hereford in the 2A North regional final.

Missing but in action

Joppatowne's Jeremy Navarre, Broadneck's Tyler Moyer and Woodlawn's Brandon Jones - all accomplished 215-pound wrestlers - are missing practice for that sport because of their success on the football field.

Navarre is a defending 2A-1A state champion. Moyer is a 4A-3A state runner-up, and Jones is a Baltimore County and regional champion who placed fifth at the 4A-3A state tournament.

Wrestling practices began on Nov. 15, but Broadneck plays at Woodlawn in a 4A state semifinal and Joppatowne plays Dunbar at City College in a 1A semifinal, both on Saturday.

On the rebound

Randallstown junior quarterback Marcus McLain has come a long way since an earlier 26-6 loss at No. 3 Woodlawn, during which he threw five interceptions. Three of those picks were returned for scores.

In the come-from-behind 18-15 victory over Bel Air in the 3A North regional final on Friday night, McLain's 16th touchdown pass of the season accounted for the go-ahead score and, eventually, led to the sixth straight victory for the No. 7 Rams (10-2).

Line moves forward

Joppatowne's surprise run to the 1A state semifinals can be traced to a number of factors.

There was coach Greg Komondor's decision to promote sophomore Anthony Preston to starting quarterback after an 0-2 start. There was a confidence-boosting 28-21 upset of Aberdeen in late September.

But the maturity of an offensive line made up of five first-year starters may be the central reason.

Seniors Ray Sacco and Jerimiah Waters, juniors Randall Russum and Johnathan Hardesty and sophomore Spencer Washington have paved the way for running backs Brent Cash and Joseph Ivory and Preston, allowing Joppatowne to rush for more than 2,700 yards.

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