Weekend football report: Virginia

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By Paul Tenorio, James Wagner, Preston Williams and Matt Brooks
Washington Post Staff Writers
Monday, September 13, 2010; 5:25 PM

Northern Region report

With his team leading by eight and just seconds remaining on the clock on Friday night, Fairfax Coach Kevin Simonds grabbed senior quarterback Spencer MacLeod by the face mask on the sideline.

"The best formation in high school football," Simonds said. "Victory formation."

As MacLeod jogged onto the field with a smile, ready to cap the Rebels' stunning 20-12 win over then-No. 7 Robinson, it marked not just Simonds's first victory as head coach of Fairfax (1-1) but also the culmination of a summer's worth of selling a program on a new mentality.

Since taking over the program, Simonds had preached the team's new slogan: "I'm In."

To Simonds, "I'm In" was about more than just buying into a new scheme or system. It meant an attitude off the field, performance in the classroom, relationships with teammates - it was about representing Fairfax football.

"I had kids that didn't know what it meant the first couple weeks," Simonds said. "And now they're almost drawn to tears if something doesn't go right because they don't want to let people down."

Against Robinson (1-1), there weren't many things that went wrong. Fairfax upended the Rams thanks mostly to a stout defensive performance that limited a very strong rushing attack and a run-first offense that Friday featured some passing.

In the late stages of the game, it was Fairfax - not Robinson - that pounded the ball to wear the defense down. Senior running back Marcus Bailey broke off a 70-yard touchdown run to make it 20-12, and the Rebels defense had two late interceptions to hold Robinson off.

Around the Northern Region

South County defensive back Ronny Vandyke dominated the first half of Friday's 42-7 win over Washington-Lee (0-2) and was responsible for his team's first three scores on both sides of the ball.

Vandyke, a 6-foot-3, 200-pound senior who has committed to Virginia Tech, picked off Washington-Lee's first pass attempt and ran it back 17 yards for a score. Then he partially blocked a punt. On the ensuing Stallions drive, he caught a 30-yard fade from quarterback Jacob Josephs, followed by a 14-yard touchdown catch.

On the Generals' next possession, Vandyke chased down the opposing punter, who had muffed the kick, tackled him and jarred the ball loose. Vandyke's brother, linebacker Devin Vandyke, scooped it up and ran seven yards for another South County (1-1) score.

"It was great for us because we needed a win because some people, even some students at school, were doubting us," said Ronny Vandyke, who didn't play the second half. "We are better than 0-1."...


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