St. Vincent Pallotti knew it was in for a tough season opening match-up with the Maryland School for the Deaf. Entering the contest, the Orioles had won 32 of their last 35 games including a 38-6 victory over Baltimore Lutheran last year.
To make matters worse, senior two-way lineman Derek Pittman had to sit and watch while wearing a brace after tearing a meniscus in his right knee.
It was an uphill battle that the host Panthers just couldn’t climb as they lost 37-13 to MSD at Fairland Regional Park on Friday night.
“Andy [Bonheyo] does a very good job with his team. They are very fundamentally sound and we knew that coming in,” said Pallotti head coach Pat Courtemanche. “We knew they had a lot of speed and they got outside on us most of the first half. We’re just going to have to correct that.”
Senior quarterback Todd Bonheyo threw an 11-yard touchdown pass to Derek Frank on the first drive of the game for Maryland School for the Deaf. In the second quarter, senior running back Ethan Kramer broke several arm tackles to rush for a 46-yard run to put the Orioles up by two scores.
But Pallotti answered on the next drive. Junior running back A.J. Bright broke a big run to the outside and gained 44-yards to set up one-yard rush by senior Tyler Drew. Travis Harrison’s kick made it a 14-7 game.
“The kickoff return and the blocked punt [hurt us],” said Courtemanche. “We just didn’t execute. It’s hard when you give them fourteen points off of special teams.”
At times, the Panthers showed glimpses of being a dominant rushing game with backs Bright and Tyler Drew but the lost of Pittman really hurt the offensive line.
“They made plays in every faucet of the game,” Courtemanche said of the Orioles. “We made a couple mistakes and didn’t execute very well. I take full blame and responsibility for this lost.”
On defense, senior cornerback Brandon Manning intercepted a pass and sophomore defensive end Aaron Collins recorded a sack.
There is no time for Pallotti to dwell on this lost. On Friday, the Panthers will travel to Severn at 4 p.m. Last season, they knocked off the Admirals 21-18 and you can bet Severn will be looking for payback.
|MD School for the Deaf 37, St. Vincent Pallotti 13|
|MSD-Frank 11 pass from Bonheyo (Setzer kick) – 6:47|
|MSD-Kramer 46 run (Setzer kick) – 7:51|
|SVP-Drew 1 run (Harrison kick) – 3:49|
|MSD-Krame 75 kickoff ret. (Harrington pass from Bonheyo) – 3:31|
|MSD-Steingeiser 75 ret. with blocked punt (Setzer kick) – 0:46|
|SVP-Bright 40 run (run failed) – 10:03|
|MSD-Morris 6 run (Kramer pass from Bonheyo) – 1:46|