Perry Hall finds stopping power

No. 11 Gators clinch County 4A-3A crown with defensive stand

Perry Hall 28 Kenwood 26

November 11, 2006|By Todd Karpovich | Todd Karpovich,Special to The Sun

While No. 11 Perry Hall has relied on quarterback Jason Mattison to make clutch plays all season, it was the Gators' defense that made the biggest play in last night's 28-26 win over host Kenwood.

The Bluebirds (7-3, 6-3) erased a 14-point deficit in the second half against the Gators (9-1, 8-1), but a two-point conversion to tie the score with four minutes left failed when running back Donnell Flemming was smothered by Perry Hall's defense. The win gave Perry Hall its third straight Baltimore County 4A-3A League title, and the Gators have won 27 of 28 games in the county.

"Kenwood had a great game plan for us and we had a hard time stopping them," Perry Hall coach Nick Arminio said. "Our seniors on that two-point conversion stopped it, clogged it up and made the biggest play of the year."

Mattison completed 11 of 21 passes for 172 yards with two touchdowns and two interceptions. He also converted several key first downs with passes to Dave Stinebaugh and Sean McColligan.

The Bluebirds, however, matched up well with Perry Hall and scored on their opening drive when Shavarr Williams took a handoff from quarterback Geron Mills and ran for a 47-yard score. Perry Hall tied the score on the first play of the second quarter on a 4-yard run by Andrew Leake. The run capped a 10-play, 58-yard drive highlighted by a 39-yard pass from Mattison to Stinebaugh.

Mattison found Stinebaugh again for a 9-yard score with 28 seconds left in the first half that gave the Gators a 13-7 lead.

Mattison, who has 10 touchdown passes this season, is confident the Gators can make a deep run in the playoffs.

"The difference in the game is we just came out and played harder," Mattison said. "We have been overlooked a lot. I think we can go pretty deep this year. I think we can do it."

The Bluebirds cut into a 14-point, second-half deficit on a 23-yard touchdown run by Williams and another 64-yard score by Flemming. However, Mattison found McColligan on a 57-yard score to boost the Gators' lead to 28-20.

But Kenwood cut the lead to six late in the fourth quarter on a 1-yard touchdown run by Flemming. However, that was all the points Perry Hall would give up as they stopped Flemming's run to tie the score on the two-point conversion.

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