But Joppy — who has seven total touchdowns in six games — couldn’t do further damage to his sore joint by playing, and he packed his football gear for the trip to Silver Spring, just in case.
As it turned out, Joppy stayed in his street clothes and the fifth-ranked Screamin’ Eagles got along fine without their do-everything playmaker. Senior James Jones-Williams rushed for a career-high 193 yards and two touchdowns and senior Nick Fahs chipped in with three catches for 95 yards and a score as Seneca Valley beat the Bengals, 35-7.
“With James and Nick and some of the backups playing well, we said, ‘You know what? Let’s make an executive decision here,” Kim said. “If we can save [Joppy] a little bit for Gaithersburg and Damascus and Watkins Mill, the teams at the back end of the schedule, we need to do it.’ ”
Seneca Valley (7-0) pulled away from Blake (4-3) after a scoreless first quarter with the game’s first three touchdowns. The Bengals had won four straight, but Jones-Williams — who has 13 total touchdowns — put the Eagles ahead to stay with a 14-yard scoring run in the second quarter.
Joppy had spent some time in the backfield this season, taking some of the offensive spotlight off Jones-Williams, who topped the 1,000-yard rushing mark last fall.
But the 5-foot-8, 195-pound back showed he can still handle the load on Friday, carrying the ball 31 times. He also caught two passes for 22 yards and played 17 snaps on defense, according to Kim.
“He’s the iron man right now, and he’s getting it done — no doubt about it,” Kim said.
Meanwhile, Fahs had a 41-yard catch to set up Seneca Valley’s first score and later caught a 50-yard touchdown pass from junior Calvin Reighard. The senior was also Reighard’s go-to target in a 40-21 win over Rockville (1-6) on Oct. 5 with Joppy knocked out of the game early, setting career highs with seven catches for 115 yards and two touchdowns.
Joppy injured his shoulder late in the first quarter against the Rams and hasn’t taken full contact since. Kim said the 5-foot-9, 165-pound junior will be “full-go” in practice this week and should be ready to face Gaithersburg (2-5) on Friday. . . .
Whitman has struggled offensively this season, but junior Zac Morton continues to be a bright spot. The running back rushed for a career-high 232 yards and two touchdowns in the Vikings’ 24-6 win over Blair. Though the Vikings (3-4) have scored just nine total touchdowns in seven games, Morton has 816 rushing yards and four touchdowns for the season. He’s topped the 100-yard rushing mark in all three wins.
Earlier this fall, Quince Orchard defensive lineman Andrew Ankrah narrowed his college shortlist to James Madison and Towson, and the two Football Championship Subdivision area schools met last Saturday, marking the last official visit for Ankrah. He went to the game at James Madison, and the following day, after the school had won 13-10 over their rival, the Dukes had also won a new recruit in Ankrah.
“The atmosphere was just awesome, for a Division I-AA school, you could compare them to a D-1 school,” said Ankrah. “Just the campus . . . it just seems like an ideal college school for me.”
It was a treacherous summer for the 6-3, 215-pound Ankrah, who not only set aside time to attend combines and prospect camps across the region, but also set a goal for himself not to miss an offseason workout at Quince Orchard.
The development of Ankrah has paid off for the Quince Orchard pass rush, alongside Richmond signee Kieran Gregory at the opposite end position. The Cougars defense has allowed just four touchdowns this season, including one rushing score.
Quince Orchard has won the last two games by a combined 88-3, including a 43-0 shutout win over Richard Montgomery on Friday night. That capped off a week full of highlights for Ankrah, who nonetheless said he still has a foul taste in his mouth over the Cougars 12-9 loss to Seneca Valley three weeks ago. Ankrah said the defense will spend the rest of the season trying to atone for that loss.
“After losing the Seneca game, it really lit up a real fire,” said Ankrah. “These two games that we’ve played, we’ve just been priding ourselves on playing Quince Orchard defense. We’re just more hungrier than ever.”