Football

Hawks roll over Howard in state championship rematch

St. George's quarterback Robert Shorts (11) with a pass attempt in the first quarter against Howard.

St. George’s quarterback Robert Shorts (11) with a pass attempt in the first quarter against Howard.

St. George's Brian Benson (5) runs the ball as Howard's Darin Matthews (61) dives for the tackle.

St. George’s Brian Benson (5) runs the ball as Howard’s Darin Matthews (61) dives for the tackle.

Howard's defense line put pressure on St. George's quarterback Robert Shorts (11) durung a pass attempt in the first quarter.

Howard’s defense line put pressure on St. George’s quarterback Robert Shorts (11) durung a pass attempt in the first quarter.

St. George's quarterback Robert Shorts (11) hands the ball off to running back Brian Benson (5) in the home game against Howard.

St. George’s quarterback Robert Shorts (11) hands the ball off to running back Brian Benson (5) in the home game against Howard.

St. George's Damani Wells (3) runs down the field breaking tackles in their home game against Howard.

St. George’s Damani Wells (3) runs down the field breaking tackles in their home game against Howard.

Howard's Korey Kent (10) breaks a tackle attempt in their game against St. George's.

Howard’s Korey Kent (10) breaks a tackle attempt in their game against St. George’s.

ST. GEORGES – The St. Georges Tech football team made no secret of looking forward to their rematch with defending Division II champion Howard on Saturday morning.

Then they went out and extracted a measure of revenge with a convincing 30-6 win over the visiting Wildcats, evening their record at 1-1 on the season.

“I’d be lying if I said that wasn’t on our guys’ minds,” Hawks coach J.D. Maull said. “It was just another game for the coaches, but the kids wanted revenge.”

“We wanted to redeem ourselves from last year,” said sophomore running back Brian Benson, who scored two bruising touchdown runs on the day. “It was a little intense all week leading up to the game, but we’re glad to get the win.”

After a scoreless first quarter, the Hawks marched down the field to start the second and Benson battered his way through the Wildcat defense for a five-yard touchdown and two-point conversion run for the first half’s only points.

Howard (0-2, 0-1 Flight B) responded, starting the third quarter with their only sustained drive of the game, a 10-play, 55-yard effort that ended in a five-yard scoring run for Stephen Forbi.

On St. Georges’ next possession, junior Damani Wells took an inside hand off 16 yards down the right side for a 16-6 advantage for the Hawks. Benson added another touchdown from 10 yards out and Craig Congo zigzagged for a 50-yard strike late in the fourth quarter to close out the scoring.

“It’s great because we can throw five, six or seven running backs at the defense,” said Wells. “We get great blocking from our offensive line. We keep off teams off balance like ‘Whoa, what’s going on out there?’”

“Whenever one back gets tired,” Benson added, “Another one steps up.”

“Damani brings a level of a quickness and a high football IQ to our team,” Maull explains. “B.J. [Benson] is only a sophomore and if he works hard, he can be up there with the Selbys and Brightwells as one of the really good running backs we’ve had here.”

For Wells, the Hawks’ improvement will come from cutting down on penalties and errors that were all too present Saturday —even if they had the talent to overcome those mistakes.

“We need to cut down on the silly flags we didn’t need and talk with our pads instead of our mouths,” he said. “We wanted to learn from the William Penn game last week and we’ll learn from Howard this week.”

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