When the Arundel offense jogged onto the field for its first series of the season, all eyes were on senior quarterback Nick Rosati.
Rosati, making his first career start, had big shoes to fill after Wildcats’ departed starter Billy Cosh moved on to Kansas State. He did not disappoint the home crowd of an estimated at 5,000 fans.
The five-foot-nine quarterback capped an eight-play drive that spanned 72 yards with an 11-yard touchdown pass to Tyler Young to put Arundel ahead 7-0 with 7:55 left in the first quarter.
Rosati fit perfectly into the Wildcats’ trigger-happy offense, completing 18 of 32 passes for 268 yards and three touchdowns, leading Arundel to a 30-7 rout over Old Mill on Friday night in Gambrills.
“He can really, really [throw the ball],” said Arundel head coach Chuck Markiewicz. “He’s a good quarterback, he’s coaches very well. David Doy [offensive coordinator] is tremendous. I mean, he’s coached Nick Elko, Billy Cosh and Nick Rosati and that’s the guy who got them where they are today.”
As well as the Arundel offense played, accumulating 416 total yards including 101 rushing from Joe Blackwell, it was the Wildcats’ defense that really impressed. In the secondary, cornerback Jon Haskett knocked down four passes while junior defensive back Mike Partilla and senior Mike Coombs each picked off a pass by Old Mill quarterback Deonte Shields.
On the defensive line, junior Tommy Chepurko was a force. He finished with nine tackles and made it hard for the Patriots running backs to find room to run. Zach Stergiou, Jordan walker, Kenny Edwards, Mike Pucci and CJ Brinkley all had strong games for Arundel.
“We have shut-down corners which helps because you can do some things in the box,” said Markiewicz. “The rest of the defense can play, they know their roles and coach [Vinnie] Elliott fits them in the right places. Tonight the puzzle came together and there were no missing pieces.”
Old Mill’s offensive line got pushed around and holes to run through were few and far in between but Demond Brown still managed to carry the ball for 203 yards on 32 carries and scored the Patriots’ lone score in the third quarter.
Rosati and Young hooked up again the second quarter for another touchdown and Arundel added a 26-yard field goal by Wade Korvin to take a 17-0 lead into the half.
Old Mill had a mistake-riddled game, turning the ball over four times. The Patriot offense didn’t advance the ball into Wildcat territory until late in the second quarter.
On that drive late in the second, Old Mill was threatening with a first-and-10 from Arundel’s 15 yard line but Shields threw his second interception of the game with 16 seconds left in the half effectively ending the Patriots best scoring opportunity to that point.
In the third quarter, trailing 17-7, Old Mill had a snap sail over punter Matt Lampe’s head that was recovered by the Wildcats at the Patriots’ one-yard line. Rosati kept it up the middle for a score.
In the fourth after Brown charged Old Mill down the field, the Patriots had a first-and-goal at the Arundel five-yard line. Three straight runs by junior running back Rob Chesson were stuffed by the defense and on fourth down, Shield fumbled the ball and Arundel recovered it.
“The story of today was our missed execution offensively and [making] mistakes at times when mistakes can‘t happen,” said Old Mill head coach Damien Ferragamo. “Where the game was lost was on my side of the ball today because I am the offensive coordinator so we kind of put our defense in a bad spot but I thought they played pretty well.”
Execution is the name of the game in football.
|No. 5 Arundel 30, No. 2 Old Mill 7
|A-Young 11 pass from Rosati (Korvin kick), 7:55|
|A-Young 8 pass from Rosati (Korvin kick), 11:54|
|A-Korvin 26 FG, 8:33|
|OM-Brown 1 run (Sears kick), 6:04|
|A-Rosati 1 run (kick failed), 0:15|
|A-Washington 18 pass from Rosati (Korvin kick), 10:02|