No. 2 Spalding spoils Pallotti’s MIAA A football debut with 48-o rout; Guiterrez throws 2 TD passes (VIDEO HERE!)
by Derek Toney
Despite two blowout victories, Archbishop Spalding High’s football team failed to score in the second quarter. The Cavaliers corrected that in a big way Friday evening.
No. 2 Spalding assembled its most complete performance of the young season, dismantling ninth-ranked St. Vincent Pallotti, 48-0, in a MIAA A Conference contest at Whittles Field in Severn. Senior quarterback Nick Guiterrez accounted for three touchdowns for the Cavaliers (3-0 overall, 1-0 MIAA A), and Lavain Scruggs returned an interception for a score.
Spalding gave Pallotti a rough indoctrination into the area’s toughest league, putting up a running clock early in the third quarter. The Cavaliers, ranked No. 3 in the state media poll, have won five straight dating back to last fall when it played two games in an “open season,” where MIAA football-playing members, at their discretion played, but league standings were not kept.
In its first league game since a heartbreaking loss to McDonogh School in the 2019 semifinals (scored 23 straight points after trailing 19-0 in the second half, but McDonogh scored in final minute for 29-23 win), Spalding showed its ready to capture its first MIAA A championship.
Cavaliers coach Kyle Schmitt said he stressed to his team this week about maintaining in the second quarter.
“The point differential (in the second quarter) was 21-0 our opponents in the first two weeks and I got on the kids about that,” said Schmitt. “We got up 14-0 and we relaxed a little bit…That pick-six was big.”
Scruggs, a University of Maryland commit, went 68 yards after intercepting a pass from Pallotti quarterback Kenny Prince, extending Spalding’s advantage to 21-0, midway in the second. Guiterrez dropped a pass into Max Moss’ hands with 26 seconds left, making it 28-0 at halftime.
It was a running clock, less than three minutes in the second half, after Jordan Harris scooted 60 yards for a touchdown and reserve quarterback Malik Washington threw a 21-yard score to Patrick Wagner.
Guiterrez totaled 152 yards (nine-of-16 for 109 yards passing) before his night ended early in the third, and Harris (98 total yards) added a 40-yard catch-and-run score. Mansoor Delane’s complimented Scruggs’ pick-six with an interception for Spalding’s defense, and Kellan Wyatt and Jason Robertson each finished with two sacks.
Scruggs said the Cavaliers didn’t want to disappoint in their 2021 MIAA A debut in front of a huge audience, including a packed student section.
“We came out here with the energy, the intensity was high, great crowd and we just did what we had to do,” said Scruggs. “Pallotti was talking a lot…it was a statement game.”
It was a humbling introduction for the Panthers (2-1, 0-1 MIAA A), who won the B title in 2019 after reaching the final in 2018. Pallotti, which beat Montgomery County private stronghold Georgetown Prep and Pennsylvania’s Brashears the first two weeks, managed 93 yards Friday.
“Now they know who they are, what they are and where they need to be,” said Pallotti coach Tony Ashley, whose team was shutout for the first time since 2015. “They got a choice: they can be a 48-0 team for the rest of the season because it doesn’t get any easier or they can find it in themselves to do better.
They (Spalding) beat us in every facet…they played fast, they were physical, great size. There was nothing I didn’t expect…I didn’t expect a 48-0 score, but that was a byproduct of what we did Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.”
Ten seasons ago, Spalding won its MIAA A debut (defeated Mount St. Joseph). The Anne Arundel County school has been a consistent winner in MIAA A play (two losing seasons) and Top 10 team in the area rankings.
The proverbial bar is set even higher- especially after Friday’s performance – as the Cavaliers are showing they’re ready for a championship breakthrough this season.
“If we can separate all the nice things people say about us from the work that needs to be done…we’re appreciative of it all, but we got a lot of work to do,” said Schmitt.
No. 2 Archbishop Spalding 48, No. 9 St. Vincent Pallotti 0
Pallotti 0 0 0 0 – 0
Spalding 7 21 13 7 – 48
Spalding – Nick Guiterrez 14 run (Corey Butts kick)
Spalding – Jordan Harris 40 pass from Guiterrez (Butts kick)
Spalding – Lavain Scruggs 68 interception return (Butts kick)
Spalding – Max Moss 23 pass from Guiterrez (Butts kick)
Spalding – Harris 60 run (kick failed)
Spalding – Patrick Wagner 21 pass from Malik Washington (Tyler Troxel kick)
Spalding – Hakim Simms 8 run (Troxel kick)