Gilman celebrates its 35-7 win over Calvert Hall in the MIAA… (Steve Ruark / For The Baltimore…)
A year after Gilman escaped with a 34-32 double-overtime win over Calvert Hall in the inaugural Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association A Conference championship game, the Greyhounds put a much more emphatic stamp on their 11th title since 1995.
No. 1 Gilman's size and strength at the point of attack wore down the No. 2 Cardinals as the Greyhounds pounded out a 35-7 victory at Johnny Unitas Stadium.
Both teams started slowly, playing to a scoreless stalemate in the opening quarter.
"In the beginning, we were just trying to loosen them up, and make them not know what was coming," Gilman quarterback Shane Cockerille said. "We tried to spread them out. It obviously worked. They spread out, and we were able to pound the ball with me and the backs."
When Gilman (9-2) finally unleashed its power running game in the second quarter, Calvert Hall (8-3) simply had no answer.
The Greyhounds put together a 12-play, 90-yard drive in which Cockerille carried seven times for 73 yards and scored on a 1-yard plunge for the game's first touchdown with 5:18 left in the first half.
They quickly added to their lead after senior Matt Tilley's interception and a penalty on Calvert Hall gave Gilman possession at the Cardinals' 16-yard line.
From there, it took only five plays for senior running back Wyatt Dickerson's 1-yard burst to build the margin to 14-0.
In the third quarter, another long Gilman scoring drive added to the lead. Cockerille finished the sequence with a 10-yard pass to senior Henry Poggi.
Cockerille followed that up with a 58-yard run to the Cardinals' 11-yard line and scored one play later on a 7-yard burst through a gaping hole for a 28-0 lead.
He finished his Gilman career with perhaps his best performance, rushing for 234 yards on 26 carries in the game.
"He was outstanding," Calvert Hall coach Donald Davis said. "Shane's the best football player, I think, in the area. He did what a football player of that stature is supposed to do."
Calvert Hall finally broke through when junior quarterback Colar Kuhns' second effort enabled him to break an initial tackle and find the end zone from the Gilman 4-yard line with 6:58 remaining.
"I think this is the best team I've coached in 16 years here," Gilman coach Biff Poggi said. "It's the most complete team. Our defense is unbelievable. And the offense is punishing. It's my kind of team."
C 0 0 0 7 7
G 0 14 7 14 35
G-Cockerille 1 run (Wey kick)
G-Dickerson 1 run (Wey kick)
G-Poggi 10 pass from Cockerille (Wey kick)
G- Cockerille 7 run (Wey kick)
C-Kuhns 4 run (Soriano kick)
G-Dickerson 6 run (Wey kick)