As H.D. Woodson running back Keon Coleman took the field at Ballou yesterday, he knew exactly what to expect and, more important, what the Warriors needed to do about it.
"Ballou was going to blitz and send everyone to the line to try to stop us when we ran up the middle," said Coleman, who came into the game as the D.C. Interscholastic Athletic Association's third-leading rusher. "So we just did the opposite."
No. 15 H.D. Woodson ran outside with Coleman (204 yards on 18 carries), threw short passes and took advantage of quarterback Maurice Moore's scrambling en route to a 22-6 win that clinched the Warriors (8-0, 4-0) a berth in the DCIAA playoffs. Ballou fell to 5-4, 2-2, and was eliminated from playoff contention with the loss.
"This was a huge win for us, one of the biggest we'll have all year," said first-year Warriors coach Greg Fuller, a 1978 graduate of Ballou. "The goal we had from Day One was to get to the playoffs, and we accomplished what we set out to do."
On their second possession, the Warriors drove to the Ballou 7-yard line. On first and goal from the 7, Coleman was used as a decoy, enabling Moore to break through for a touchdown with 5 minutes 34 seconds remaining. Coleman converted the two-point conversion to make it 8-0.
That score held until Woodson's final possession of the first half.
Starting at their 43, the Warriors used Coleman (three carries for 44 yards on the drive) to move to the Ballou 18. On second and 10, Moore picked up the Ballou blitz, adjusted, and found Howard Gilmore to increase Woodson's lead to 14-0.
"Once I saw their inside linebacker blitz, I threw the ball to the player in that area and Howard was wide open," said Moore, who completed 3 of 5 passes for 48 yards and two touchdowns. He ran for the third Warriors score.
In the third quarter, Moore threw his second touchdown pass, a 13-yarder to John Slaughter.
Ballou's Norman Morrow scored on a one-yard run late in the fourth quarter to round out the scoring. Morrow, the Knights' quarterback, ran for 105 yards on 10 carries and completed 10 of 15 passes for 138 yards.
The Warriors have clinched at least the second seed in the DCIAA East, and will host Eastern next week, with the winner earning the top seed.