McDonough jumps to a quick lead and never looks back in a 41-7 rout of Patuxent

By Greg Schimmel
Special to The Washington Post
Saturday, September 25, 2010; 1:43 AM


In its first three games, Patuxent allowed seven points - total.

On Friday night against McDonough, the Panthers surrendered 14 points in the game's first five minutes.

Senior running back Justin Brooks scored on a 59-yard option run 52 seconds into the game, and senior linebacker Devante Gray returned an interception off a tipped pass 46 yards for a touchdown less than four minutes later and McDonough was off to the races in a 41-7 win.

"We had to make a statement tonight," Gray said. "I think we made that statement."

McDonough gained 335 yards of total offense to Patuxent's 190, making the most of a significant speed advantage and capitalizing on uncharacteristic poor tackling by the Panthers.

Brooks set the tone with the initial touchdown, racing through the Patuxent defense and outrunning would-be tacklers after senior quarterback Aquil Michaux waited for the perfect moment to pitch the ball.

"It was a big lift because people usually score on us first, but today we did everything first," Brooks said. "We knew that we were going to dominate them with speed because they don't really have any."

Patuxent's only real chance to get back in the game came when sophomore Travez Lee returned the ensuing kickoff following Brooks's touchdown run 89 yards to the McDonough 7. But Patuxent (3-1 overall, 3-1 Southern Maryland Athletic Conference) fumbled on the next play to end that opportunity.

"This is the best opponent we've played so far," Patuxent Coach Steve Crounse said. "As a coaching staff we overanalyzed it. We started worrying about all the weapons they have and we started playing conservative."

The Rams scored three more touchdowns in the second quarter to put the game out of reach.

Senior running back Keith O'Kelly shed multiple tackles on his way to a 53-yard touchdown on a screen pass from Michaux near the line of scrimmage.

Sophomore quarterback Devone Boone scored on a 10-yard touchdown run after senior running back Kenneth Grimes perfectly sold a fake handoff into the line, and Michaux added a 10-yard touchdown run shortly before the half.

"We were just hoping we could come out and execute," McDonough Coach Luke Ethington said. "We hoped we could get a couple plays on them."

McDonough senior linebacker Patrick Adams provided the highlight of the second half with a one-handed interception that he returned 35 yards for a score.

Sophomore Collin Gannt got Patuxent on the board with a late 35-yard touchdown catch from senior quarterback Ed Massengill.

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