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Hubs trip Leopards, focus on county title

October 28, 2002|by MARK KELLER

keller@herald-mail.com

SMITHSBURG - With a playoff berth out the window and the Monocacy Valley Athletic League title long gone, the North Hagerstown football team has set its sights on two "mythical titles."

Rather than playing simply for pride, the Hubs are trying to win the Washington County and Hagerstown city titles in the final three weeks of the season.

North took another step in that direction Friday night in the mud bog that once was the Smithsburg football field, carried on the shoulders of running back Bobby Waugh to a 20-6 win over the Leopards.

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"It's a small county. You only have to win four games, so we're focusing on that," said North coach Danny Cunningham. "Then you've got the city championship right around the corner. Two out of three wouldn't be bad."

Two out of three was nearly the number of times that Waugh carried the ball for the Hubs (2-6, 2-5). The senior tailback carried 32 times (the Hubs ran 53 plays on offense) for 187 yards and two touchdowns as the Leopards struggled to find a way to slow him down.

"They ran two plays all night and we couldn't figure out how to stop them," Smithsburg coach Buddy Orndorff. "(North) came out there and played like they were fired up and determined to win."

Smithsburg (2-6, 1-6) rarely found the way. Waugh got on a roll early behind the blocking of the offensive line, breaking off six runs of six yards or more on his first eight carries and forcing Cunningham to change his gameplan.

"We were going to give the ball to Derrick Keith 20-to-25 times tonight, but Bobby was running well," Cunningham said. "But it all goes back to the line, too. They really opened things up for him."

Still, Smithsburg got on the board first midway through the second quarter on a 5-yard touchdown run by Dustin Sier, who finished with 108 yards on 24 carries.

But Waugh kept plugging away, running behind the line of Mitch Wolters, Will Mulieri, Matt Tedrick, Steve Schutte, Steve Feight and David Bennett. Following the Leopards' TD, Waugh carried eight times in a nine-play drive that ended with an 11-yard TD for the running back. Brent Toms added the PAT for a 7-6 Hubs lead.

Smithsburg took the kickoff to start the second half and drove all the way to the North 30 before Daniel Faulders threw an interception to Bennett at the 5. Bennett returned the pick all the way to the Smithsburg 45 and the officials tacked on another 15 yards for a personal foul on the Leopards.

Five plays later, Waugh found his way across the goal line again, this time from 3 yards out for a 13-6 lead.

Penalties haunted Smithsburg in the second half. The Leopards were penalized 10 times in the game - eight of them came after the break.

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