After Coolidge went unbeaten the past two seasons in division play and winning consecutive Interhigh League football championships, it was only logical to consider the Colts a contender for a third straight crown.
But the Colts, with many key positions to fill, showed very little offense early and were shut out by Ballou, 6-0. The defending champions didn't get the opportunity to quickly make up for that because their nonleague game with Spingarn was canceled and Coach Sam Taylor didn't have any other nonleague foes scheduled.
Coolidge picked up a game with Archbishop Carroll, but it was hardly a morale booster. The inactivity was obvious as the Lions easily won, 27-0.
Coolidge's defense played much better against No. 14 H.D. Woodson, but still did not score, losing 14-0.
But Taylor's patience with his inexperienced offense has finally begun to pay dividends. Sean Chisley ran 10 yards for one touchdown, added a two-point conversion and caught a 15-yard touchdown pass from Daymon Anderson late in the third period as Coolidge rallied from a 12-0 deficit to beat Cardozo, 14-12, Saturday, to improve its overall record to 1-3.
The victory put Coolidge right back in the thick of the Interhigh West race. McKinley leads the division with a 2-0 mark. Coolidge and Dunbar are both 1-0.
The Pat Poole-to-Don Caparotti pass-catch combination is the main reason Damascus has won five of its first seven games and appears headed for a Maryland State Class B football playoff berth.
Poole, a 6-foot, 170-pound junior, has completed better than 55 percent of his passes for more than 950 yards with 11 touchdowns. Nine of his touchdown passes have been caught by the speedy 5-10, 165-pound Caparotti.
Caparotti, a senior, has 35 receptions for more than 650 yards. He has proven a pretty good pass catcher on defense also, intercepting eight passes including two he returned for touchdowns.
Caparotti had three interceptions in Saturday's 28-14 victory over Liberty, one of which went for a score.
George Mason's 35-0 triumph over Page County not only ended a three-year, 19-game losing streak, but may also go a significant way in helping save the program at the Falls Church school.
A number of factors have had the school administration considering dropping football in the near future.
"We did a study as to whether to drop the sport and the community and other people got involved," said assistant principal Joan Tannenbaum. "For one, the kids were down in the dumps because we had lost so many. Second, we had some internal problems because of our coaching situation, not able to get a coach to teach in the building.
"But we decided to try a three-pronged approach. One, we wanted to get a teacher in the building and Bruce Evans has been that person; two, we wanted to get a medical doctor for safety reasons, and three, go through a slow re-building process," she said. "We felt it might take some time, but we wanted to build a positive attitude among the students."
They say winning can cure most ills and, right now, the George Mason family is enjoying the win.
"The kids were under a lot of stress and they wanted to win so much they could taste it," Tannenbaum said.