Dunbar grounds Patterson, 34-8

Lightning delays play

Poets' Irby scores 2 TDs

High Schools

Football

September 18, 2004|By Ryan Basen | Ryan Basen,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

Patterson built an early lead against city rival Dunbar in football last night, and then lightning struck.

After a 30-minute delay just before halftime, Dunbar rallied and dominated the last 24-plus minutes of the game, blasting Patterson, 34-8, before a boisterous crowd at Utz Twardowicz Field in Patterson Park.

Nathan Irby scored two touchdowns, one on a 65-yard interception return, and Marcus Taylor threw for two touchdowns and 115 yards in the second half to lead the Poets' lightning-quick comeback.

Dunbar (2-1) scored all of its points within 20 minutes after going scoreless for nearly the entire first half.

"It was a big night," said Dunbar coach Ben Eaton. "It's a good win. It's part of us going on for a state championship."

Taylor said the Poets played tight in the first half, and it showed. They punted into a teammate, threw an interception and fumbled three times on the slick field (they recovered all three).

The Clippers (2-1) capitalized, scoring on a 16-yard run by quarterback Justin Boone. Andrew Lessane ran in the conversion to give Patterson an 8-0 edge.

The Clippers could have blown the game open, but on three ensuing possessions fumbled inside the Dunbar 30, were stopped on a fourth-and-short inside the Dunbar 5 and fumbled again.

After the break, the game dramatically changed. Irby scored on a 4-yard run and added a conversion run to tie the score at 8.

In the second half, Dunbar's offense couldn't be stopped. Irby led an eight-play, 70-yard drive on the Poets' first drive of the half, which Taylor capped with a 25-yard touchdown strike to Kendall Jamison.

On the first play of Dunbar's next possession, Taylor hit Darron Edwards on a quick slant over the middle. Edwards raced untouched to complete the 43-yard touchdown.

On the next play from scrimmage, Irby intercepted an overthrow by Boone and weaved his way down the field for a 65-yard touchdown return that effectively clinched the game and sent many Patterson fans walking toward the exit.

The Clippers struggled to rally, mustering less than 100 yards of offense in the second half. They also turned the ball over five times in the game.

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