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Rebels find 'special' way to rip Cougars

October 02, 2004|By TIM KOELBLE

THURMONT, Md. - Some measures within a statistical breakdown can be misleading at times.

Controlling the clock for nearly two-thirds of the contest and running 62 offensive plays compared to 28 for the opponent, you would think Catoctin had its way with South Hagerstown on Friday during Homecoming night.

Don't think too hard. ... It didn't turn out that way.

South (3-2) was efficient in its effort, putting points on the scoreboard for a 33-14 victory over Catoctin, moving to 2-0 in the MVAL Antietam Conference.

Catoctin, with only 18 players in uniform, ran the football 60 times and gained 202 yards, to go with 13 yards passing, to outgain South, 215-160. All of the Rebels' yards came on the ground.

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However, special teams continued to come up big for the Rebels, who had two blocked punts that led to scores. In the last three weeks, South's special teams have blocked five kicks.

"I guess we'll have to get the offense some work this week," said South coach Greg Kellick jokingly after he was informed of the disparity in plays. "(Blocked punts) have turned into a weapon for us. We learned some things from how Bobby Bowden runs his punt defense at Florida State.

"We were worried about Catoctin. They get the yardage and when it all falls together for them, they are going to score some points."

South struck quickly as Mark Bryan returned the opening kickoff to the Rebels 48 to set the stage for a six-play drive.

Allen Daniels scored on a 4-yard run after runs of 18 yards by Jimbo Harmon and 23 by Terrail Blair set up the short touchdown.

Catoctin's first possession lasted five minutes and reached the South 29 before it turned the ball over on downs as later drives became more miserable.

On the first play of the second period from its own 23, South's Theo Washington broke through to block a Catoctin punt. It paid an immediate dividends with Harmon's 16-yard score on the first play and a 13-0 lead.

A botched handoff on Catoctin's second play after the kickoff was picked up by South's A.J. Bandeff at the Cougars 27.

Five plays later, Bryan rolled left, cut back to the inside and used a block from a teammate to stream down the right side for an 18-yard score with 9:25 still to play in the first half.

Catoctin (1-4, 0-2) followed by using nearly nine minutes to move from its own 32 to the South 31 before a pass by freshman quarterback D.D. Doyle was picked off by Ronald Jackson.

South ran six plays in the third period, scoring on its second blocked punt - this one as Bandeff batted the ball into the ground to enable Daniels to quickly scoop it up and move 2 yards for a score. The Rebels later added another quick-strike score, set up by a 17-yard run from Blair and 27-yard burst from Daniels, who carried four tacklers for 12 of the yards. It ended when Blair scored from the 1 for a 33-0 lead.

Catoctin scored twice in the fourth period against a mix of South first-, and second-team defenders.

Matt Baseley capped an 11-play, 60-yard drive with a 7-yard run and Ken Getzendanner scored from the 1 with 51 seconds left to finish a 15-play, 50-yard drive.

"Those two blocks just killed us ... we haven't had a punt blocked in two years and we get two of them on missed assignments," said Catoctin coach Greg Williams. "Those, and their opening drive hurt. But, we scored in the end and hopefully, we can build off 14 points."

Blair led South with 48 rushing yards while Mike Lovejoy had 55 for Catoctin.

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