For the second week in a row, Southern-Anne Arundel High’s football team found itself on the road. And for the second straight week they left unfriendly terrority with victory as the Bulldogs ruined the home opener for Glen Burnie, 44-6, in an Anne Arundel County contest Friday evening.
“I think playing on the road is like must-wins for us because we are not playing in front of our home crowd,” said Bulldog senior running back Davonte Burke, who had three touchdowns in the victory.
Southern made sure the Gopher faithful never had an impact, building a 28-0 halftime advantage. The Bulldogs’ offense stalled at the Glen Burnie 25-yard line on their first possession.
The Bulldogs’ special teams stepped up, blocking a Gopher punt and placing the ball at the Glen Burnie’s 13. Burke scored from nine yards for the game’s first score. Early in the second quarter Burke’s again recorded another score as he galloped 54 yards to the end zone.
“Davonte [Burke] is a threat to take to the house every time,” said Bulldogs coach Russ Meyers. “Whether he’s running the ball, on a kick return or on a pass reception we try to get him the ball anyway we can because he is a threat score every time he touches it.”
On the next Southern drive, the Bulldogs went on a six-play, 50-yard drive as senior Hunter Riggs snared in a 24-yard pass from senior quarterback James Wells III. Riggs found the end zone again as he ran in from nine yards, giving Southern the 28-0 halftime advantage.
“Our offensive put some points tonight,” said Meyers. “We got big play potential with our offense and we [Southern] got some nice big plays tonight and that’s what we need to do.”
The Gophers were looking for a spark in the second half as Jaliel Johnson returned a fumble 20 yards for a touchdown, their first points of the season. The momentum was quickly snatched away as Burke’s ran the ensuing kickoff 78 yards for a touchdown.
“I saw some great alleys open up on the kick return,” said Burke. “The guys in front of me made some great blocks and the alleys just opened up and I burst right it and I was gone.”
Burke rushed for 88 yards, and Wells finished went 7-of-12 for 108 yards with a touchdown and an interception. The Bulldogs’ defense didn’t allow a score for the second straight week, limiting Glen Burnie’s Wildcat-style offense.
Gophers’ first-year Nick Good-Malloy said every game in 2010 will be a learning process.
“I told my guys when I first took the job that I’m not the smartest coach, I’m not the best coach in world, but I’m going to work as hard I can, care about you as much as I can and I going to push you as hard as I can.” said Good-Malloy. “The first I going to do is look at myself in the mirror and ask myself how can I get better because I have some growing to do myself as well.”
“Glen Burnie has a new coaching staff and is doing totally different things on offense,” said Meyers. “We had good week of practice and our guys did a nice job preparing for it.”
Meyers got solid defensive performances from Riggs (three tackles for loss), while Rehvon Bryan had nine tackles (two for losses). Riggs also ran for 98 yards on 12 carries with two rushing touchdowns and one touchdown reception.
Southern will try to protect their undefeated season as the take on league rival South River as the Bulldogs play their first home of the season.
“South River is a big game for us[Southern] they are rivals and they have been talking a lot of trash like they are going to beat us so we have to come out hard because they are better than the last two teams we faced,” said Burke.
“I won’t have to say one word to motivate these guys this week,” said Meyers. “South River is our biggest rival and that’s an important to these kids and having that game being our home opener will be big thing and we will have a nice crowd out there.”
The Gophers look to get their new offensive system on track against Annapolis. It will have a special meaning to Good-Malloy who starred there.
“It doesn’t get any easier, it gets harder and harder we have to keep rising to the challenge and get better in practice. Practice is above anything.” said Good-Malloy.
Southern-Anne Arundel 44, Glen Burnie 6
Southern 6 22 16 0-44
Glen Burnie 0 0 6 0-6
Southern-Burke 9 run (kick blocked)
Southern-Burke 54 run (Creek run)
Southern-Riggs 24 pass from Wells (Andermier kick)
Southern-Riggs 9 run (Andermier kick)
Glen Burnie-Johnson 20 fumble return (pass failed)
Southern-Burke 78 kickoff return (Andermier kick)
Southern-Riggs 70 run (Andermier kick)