What Episcopal wasn't able to accomplish in its first six games it has achieved with consecutive victories, including a 41-40 win in overtime over Interstate Athletic Conference power Bullis on Friday.
Ask Coach Mark Gowin about the turnaround, and he mentions three factors: a reduction in turnovers, players coming up with big plays and a little bit of luck. The Maroon (2-6, 2-2) won its first game of the season, 42-33 over St. Stephen's/St. Agnes, on Oct. 29 after a six-game losing streak -- three by seven points or less. The Maroon followed that with its first win over Bullis (5-4, 1-3) since the Bulldogs returned to the IAC in 2001.
Against Bullis, Episcopal had only two turnovers vs. an average of five in its first six games. Trailing 34-20 with 6 minutes 14 seconds remaining, wide receiver Danny Coale caught one touchdown pass and ran six yards for another to tie the game at 34 and send it into overtime. Both teams scored in overtime, but Bullis place kicker Paul Potemra slipped while planting his foot on the extra point and missed.
"You'd rather have won the game by blocking the point," Gowin said. "But up until our first win, we had been a little unfortunate in that every ball seemed to be bouncing away from us. But the kids never gave up. "
-- Judith Evans