Atholton brought down, 12-0

Potomac raises 3-year mark to 36-4 in ending Raiders' 6-win run


High Schools


Atholton running back Matt Winger had experienced both his school's first playoff berth in 20 years and its initial playoff win primarily because of his school-record rushing totals.

Last night, Winger experienced another first in a Class 2A South final loss to visiting defending state champion Potomac:

A zero on his team's side of the scoreboard.

Winger was held to a season-low 26 yards in a 12-0 shutout defeat. And as a defensive back, neither he nor a Raiders defense that included Jeff Easterly (one sack) and Stanley Oniyumba (one interception) could prevent the Wolverines' offense from reaching the end zone.

The Wolverines led 6-0 after quarterback James Nickens found 6-foot-5 receiver Bobby Shannon for a 19-yard reception late in the first quarter. It was Nickens' 25th scoring pass. The score became 12-0 when 6-foot-2, 205-pound running back Antoinial Coles rushed for his 17th touchdown from 45 yards late in the third period.

With its sixth straight win, Potomac (10-2) raised its three-year record to 36-4 and earned a berth in next weekend's 2A state semifinals. Potomac also ended a six-game winning streak by Atholton, which came from behind to win last week's semifinal with McDonough of Charles County, 24-19, in its first playoff game since 1985.

Winger entered the game with 1,948 yards and 22 touchdowns, and as the school's career rushing leader with 2,973 yards.

"They were real big; couldn't get going with what we wanted to get going," said Winger, who also broke up a pass in the first half. "Unfortunately, we fell short against Potomac. They're a hell of a team."

Last night, he faced a linebacking corps consisting of 6-2, 210-pound Adrian "Bubba" McLeod (nine tackles), and 6-1, 190-pound twins Steven (seven) and Stephan Stanback (eight).

The Raiders (8-4) had not been shut out before last night. Their worst previous offensive efforts came in a 26-6 loss in their season-opener against River Hill, and in a 7-6 setback against Reservoir on Oct. 7.

"They have a very good offense, but we came out to do exactly what we did, and that's to get the shutout," said McLeod, who also rushed for a game-high 139 yards. "Matt Winger is a very good player, but we knew if we shut him down, it would take away 90 percent of their offense."

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