Oakland Mills, Reservoir are off to surprising 3-0 starts

By Jason Mackey
Wednesday, September 22, 2010; 11:57 AM

Through the first three weeks of the 2010 football season, there's been one expected occupant at the top of the Howard County standings in No. 7 River Hill, which is 3-0 and has won its games by an average of 31.3 points.

But the two teams tied with the Hawks, Oakland Mills and Reservoir, combined to go 4-16 last year and were outscored by about two touchdowns per game during that span.

"It makes life a little easier, that's for sure," said Oakland Mills Coach Jimmy DiPietro of his team's undefeated start. Before this fall, the Scorpions were 8-52 (.133) over the past six seasons since finishing 7-3 in 2003.

DiPietro deflected all credit to his offensive and defense coordinators, Alfonso Giggers and Brian Henderson, respectively, an approach that's been echoed at Reservoir.

With former West Point powerlifter Bryan Frizzelle - a teammate of Gators Coach Bryan Cole at Oakland Mills - serving as an assistant coach, Reservoir's players have rededicated themselves to the weight room.

The offseason work has resulted in the Gators' first 3-0 start since 2007, with wins over Long Reach, Glenelg and Mount Hebron, teams that combined to go 18-13 last fall.

"It's a different team this year," Cole said. "The kids are a little more experienced. They put a lot of work in the offseason. It's a different attitude around Reservoir these days."

Reservoir hasn't drastically changed how it works out, Cole said, just that the Gators have taken a liking to Frizzelle's offseason lifting and conditioning program and have done it with more frequency.

"More than anything," Cole said, "the culture of the weight room has changed over the past year."

Of course a few standout individual performances have helped Reservoir as well.

E.J. Montgomery has solidified the Gators' quarterback spot, completing 36 of his 54 passes for 522 yards and seven touchdowns. Ten of those have been to Kyle Mitchell , who has 223 receiving yards and two scores. And Jimmy Thomas caught four touchdown passes from Montgomery during this past Friday's 38-15 win over Mount Hebron. Running back Demetri Dennis has 383 yards and four touchdowns.

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