Rams rally in fourth quarter to beat Hornets, give head coach Briscoe first win
Jonathan Briscoe was put to the test in the final minutes of his first game as McDonough head football coach. The first win can be the hardest to get.
His Rams trailed 9-8 to the visiting Great Mills Hornets as the fourth-quarter clock kept ticking down. Then one score came followed by another and just like that McDonough had a 22-9 victory on Friday night in the teams’ Southern Maryland Athletic Conference opener and Briscoe was a winner in his opening game as head coach.
Briscoe said it was confidence and drive that assisted the team in the victory.
“The biggest message I’ve wanted to get out to these guys is they are a talented team,” Briscoe said. “We just have to start
believing it. It was a close game all the way through but in that fourth quarter we saw what we were capable of. We saw two big plays by two great players and that put us above and that’s what we needed to get the win today.”
Great Mills (0-1 overall) led 9-8 just past the four-minute mark of the third quarter after sophomore Jamari Jordan caught a 31-yard touchdown pass from junior quarterback Will Skinner, who replaced starter Vincent Chapman when he went down 14 seconds into the period.
That lead stood until Demarco Davis caught a 33-yard touchdown pass from sophomore quarterback William Golden with 3:46 remaining in the fourth quarter, putting McDonough (1-0) up 15-9.
Davis then intercepted a Skinner pass and the Rams took over on their own 47-yard line. Junior Hezekiah Hawkins capitalized with a 43-yard touchdown run to make it 22-9 with just 2:18 remaining.
McDonough’s defense of Dylan Tayman-Dodson and Zachary Montgomery held the Hornets back from scoring in its final possession.
“William Golden is a sophomore and we knew coming in early that confidence was going to be something that he would have to gain as the game went on,” Briscoe said, “and as the game went on he got better and better. He had a nice pass here to Demarco Davis for a touchdown. He just kept his composure and stuck it out and led the team to a victory, so I’m proud. A sophomore doing that in his first varsity game, I couldn’t be more proud of him.”
Hawkins was the team’s leading receiver with two catches for 56 yards and two touchdowns. He gave credit where credit was due.
“First of all, I want to say William [Golden], good job. Line, good job, going both ways is tiring. We’re battling injuries. We only have six, seven linemen and they’re going both ways [offense and defense].
“The number one thing our coaches preach is belief. The second thing is hard work. Just as long as we work hard and believe in ourselves we’ll get it done. We needed effort [to come back] with everybody keeping their head in the game. We needed to push through, with injuries; we had a lot of injuries tonight. Our captains stepped up.”
Great Mills head coach Tyrone Bell said he was happy with Jordan’s efforts.
“He made a big play when called upon,” Bell said. “Every day he gets better. We need to find ways to get all of our playmakers the ball. The number one goal this week is to put the ball in the hands of Jordan, [Jeremiah] Baldwin, [Yann] Zeba and [Troy] Herbert early and let them be football players. I thought [Darius] Medley had a solid game too and we will continue to feed him in the run game.”
Medley finished as Great Mills’ leading rusher with 16 carries for 86 yards. The Hornets are scheduled to host Westlake at 6 p.m. Friday. The Wolverines shut out St. Charles in Week 1, 22-0.
Briscoe said he and his team are taking it one win at a time. The Rams are scheduled to be at St. Charles at 7 p.m. Friday.
“I’m new to the conference. I haven’t looked at St. Charles, but right now we need to focus on being better as McDonough Rams,” he said. “That’s the first and foremost goal. We’ll watch film and evaluate what we need to do after that.”
McDonough sophomore quarterback William Golden gets the play call off to his offense in Friday night’s conest against the Great Mills Hornets. Golden’s 33-yard touchdown pass to Demarco Davis with 3:46 left in the fourth quarter gave the Rams the lead and eventual 22-9 victory.