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Junior League opens its 37th season

September 03, 2002|by JACK HILL III

HALFWAY - The Washington County Junior Football League got about everything it could ask for to begin its 37th season on Monday.

The annual Labor Day kickoff was greeted with decent weather, good support and competitive games.

The total package put a smile on the face of league president Greg Price.

"It was a good day," Price said. "I'll say that the league is much more equal by the scores today. Since the B team has gotten more playing time, that has made a difference."

Monday's schedule featured five of the league's seven opening games and everyone of them was close with the exception of the first one, the Williamsport Bears' 49-0 rout of the Hancock Raiders.

n Matthew Campbell rushed for three touchdowns and passed for another touchdown for the Bears. Colby McCauley rushed for two touchdowns, while Darian Scott rushed for and caught a touchdown.

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n Adam Merrbaugh rushed 15 times for 229 yards and scored four touchdowns to help the Hagerstown Giants get past the Hagerstown Redskins, 34-21.

Merrbaugh had touchdown runs of 68, 1, 46 and 37 yards. Brandon McLean rushed for 107 yards and Javier Santiago ran for two touchdowns for the Redskins.

n Cory Sylvester picked up a blocked punt in the end zone for a touchdown with 4:16 remaining to help the Clear Spring Chargers pull out a 30-24 victory over the Smithsburg Jets. Samuel Mills rushed for two touchdowns for the Chargers. Joshua Conway rushed for 150 yards and two touchdowns for the Jets.

n Vernon Valentine rushed for three touchdowns to lead the Hagerstown Browns over the Williamsport Vikings, 25-12. Valentine's touchdowns came on runs of 23, 18 and 9 yards.

Ross Carpenter gained 110 rushing yards for the Browns. The Browns stayed totally on the ground, accumulating 288 yards rushing.

n Chad Brown rushed 22 times for 196 yards and three touchdowns to lead the Smithsburg Patriots to a 39-32 win over the Boonsboro Buccaneers. Brown scored on runs of 40, 20 and 45 yards.

Brown's 45-yard score came with 4:19 left to turn the Patriots' 33-32 lead into the final seven-point margin.

Buccaneers running back Jovann Carter rushed for 160 yards on 11 carries and two touchdowns, including a 49-yard score. Decarlos Smith added touchdown runs of 4 and 30 yards to go along with a 40-yard fumble return for a touchdown for Boonsboro.

The other two opening games will be played at Halfway tonight. The Hagerstown Packers will face the Hagerstown Steelers at 6, followed by the Boonsboro Titans meeting the Hagerstown Dolphins.

I'm glad the season is under way," Price said. "I think that it will be another good year for the kids and parents. The overall support throughout the county for the league has grown and I hope that continues."

Many familiar faces returned to patrol the sidelines in coaching roles, with one notable exception.

Longtime Williamsport Vikings' coach Doug Fowler resigned after last season. Fowler led his Vikings to 10 league tournament titles during a 12-year period from 1989-2000.

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