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Brunswick tops Williamsport in football

September 18, 1999|By MARK KELLER / Sports Editor

BRUNSWICK, Md. - One way or another, Williamsport was going to get a last shot at the end zone. But Brunswick nearly gave the Wildcats a much better shot.

It took some quick thinking from Chris Hill and coach Mark Mitchell to keep the Railroaders from making a fatal error and help Brunswick preserve a 20-13 win over the Wildcats in the Monocacy Valley Athletic League on Friday.

The Railroaders (3-0, 2-0), protecting their seven-point lead, ran two plays from inside their own 30 to run the clock below the 1:00 mark. After a delay of game penalty, quarterback Alan Webber dropped to a knee with 39 seconds left. On fourth down, he was prepared to take a knee again.

Finally realizing that the Wildcats would take over deep in Brunswick territory, Mitchell shouted for anybody on the field to call a timeout.

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"That was my fault. We basically lost track of the downs and put ourselves in a real bad situation," Mitchell said.

Hill, on the opposite side of the field, called for a timeout at about the same time the ball was snapped to Webber, who downed the ball.

After a conference by the officials, the Railroaders were awarded the timeout.

"I saw Hill calling the timeout on this side, and that's what I thought was going on. Then my coaches said the ball was snapped," said Williamsport coach Eric Michael. "But we can't really dwell on that. That's the way it came down."

Brunswick punted the ball away and, with 11 seconds on the clock, the Wildcats (2-1, 1-1) got two chances from their own 47.

Ryan Grabill's first pass fell incomplete with three seconds left, and his second was picked off by Karl Pfistner to ice the win for the Railroaders.

"It would have been nice to see. At that point in time, we like Ryan's arm with our receivers. But it just didn't happen that way," Michael said.

Less than two minutes before that final sequence, Brunswick's defense held Williamsport at bay by holding John Massey to one yard on a fourth-and-3 play at the Brunswick 28.

"We discussed two different scenarios there," Michael said. "We knew they were coming on the big blitz and there would be a lot of pressure on Grabill, and we felt that would be the best play to run. I'm confident the right decision was made and we'll live by it now."

The Wildcats took an early 7-0 lead when Massey broke outside on a sweep for a 74-yard touchdown. Massey carried 15 times for 147 yards.

Webber hit Willie McLane for a 33-yard touchdown to knot the score at 7-7 midway through the first. The pair hooked up again for a 29-yard scoring play in the second quarter.

Grabill pulled the Wildcats within a point in the third quarter, connecting with Josh Berger on a timing pattern for a 16-yard touchdown. But the Railroaders blocked Ryan McDonald's point-after try.

Hill closed the scoring with a 14-yard run late in the third.

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