Quarterback David Foust leads No. 4 seed South River over No. 1 seed, previously unbeaten Broadneck
South River stared in the face of the word “undefeated” with no fear. The word, like the regional rankings that put them at fourth and Broadneck at No. 1, rolled off their backs as they rolled past the Bruins on Friday night.
“We schedule tough teams … and these guys aren’t going to back down,” Seahawks coach Ed Dolch said. “That was our mindset coming over here.”
Led by quarterback David Foust’s two touchdowns, the Seahawks claimed the Class 4A East Region semifinal game, 28-21, extending their state championship dreams for another week.
Senior running back Joe Foy spurred the Seahawks on the ground, totaling 30 carries for 203 yards and a touchdown.
“Recently, they released the BTC All-Star roster, and he wasn’t on it. I think he’s been on a mission ever since to prove them wrong, that he is the guy in this county [to watch],” Dolch said. “Last few weeks, he’s put the offense on his back and pushed us into the playoffs.”
South River (7-4) advances to face North Point (11-0), which defeated Arundel, 43-13, on Friday night.
For Broadneck, though, the loss ended its playoff run and a 10-game unbeaten streak, led by freshman
quarterback Josh Ehrlich.
And at first, it looked like the same old Broadneck, too.
It's practically in their non-existent contracts for the Bruins to score on their first drive, and Friday was no different. The Seahawks thrice forced Broadneck to a third-down situation, but the Bruins were always able to convert. Led by speedy Jason Carcamo, who soon crossed two yards to land the first touchdown, Broadneck took a 7-0 lead with less than four minutes gone.
The Seahawks weren't going to be an easy victim, though, and they let that be known immediately. Though the Broadneck defense forced a couple lost yards on some snaps, they couldn't quite figure out Foust's arm. He completed four of his six passattempts on the drive, finally finding Sean Leonard from seven yards out for the first Seahawks touchdown.
Two-thirds of the first quarter were gone, and the Bruins were essentially back to square one.
And things weren't about to get better. First, Ehrlich was dragged down in the pocket. Then, on a throw at mid-field, he was picked off for only a handful of times of his young career by Leonard.
Heading into the second quarter, Broadneck needed to send a message — but South River beat them to it.
Though the Bruins were able to stymie their foes' first campaign, their own wouldn't last long. On second-and-18, senior Ryan Powell sacked Ehrlich. As the ball squirted out of the freshman's hands, Powell scooped it up, handing the Seahawks possession just two yards from scoring territory.
Minutes later, they would capitalize. Foust rushed a yard for the touchdown, doubling South River's lead, 14-7.
Broadneck, on the other hand, continued to ache. In eight plays, Ehrlich ushered his Bruins 52 yards down field. His ninth, though, was the end of it.
The Seahawks intercepted Ehrlich for the second time in the end zone by defensive back Aaron Stecklow.
But whatever shamrock was spurring South River's good luck must have fallen out at the same time. On the snap, a host of Bruins swarmed Foust. Defensive back Romeo Simonds extracted the ball from the pile, returning both possession, and a little favor, to the home team.
The Bruins ran with it — specifically, Carcamo did. The running back tore up 23 and 12 yards in two carries for the tying touchdown.
With its lead gone, South River moved toward correcting it. Then, on the Seahawks' fourth down, it was Foust who suffered a pick this time, as linebacker Josh Cain plucked the ball from the air and hurtled 64 yards across the soggy turf for the go-ahead Broadneck touchdown.
South River had a few tricks left in the half, though, to kill the possibility of trailing their hosts into halftime. Even with his offense stalled at first-and-22 and then second-and-16, Foy cut to the right side and rocketed 43 yards for a Seahawks touchdown.
Tangled up at 21 apiece, the two went to halftime.
Broadneck successfully corralled South River in its end or a few plays, but that was on the ground. The air was their quarterback's domain.
Foust launched a pass 51 yards into the end zone to Shaun Hemphill for the go-ahead touchdown, and after a good kick, South River had pulled ahead once again, 28-21.
“We've known all along what David could do,” Dolch said. “We've had him in the fold since seventh grade. He's going to be a great one.”
The Bruins' attempted response would end in a ball banging off the goalposts. After the Seahawks defense smothered Broadneck's scoring attempts, several times from just 13 yards out, the Bruins had to settle for a field goal attempt.
Keegan Houser's 30-yard kick attempt, though, would fly too low for fruition. Without even three points to show, the Bruins continued to trail their guests through the third quarter.
As the buzzer sounded, though, South River was teetering on its largest margin of the night, standing on the Bruins' 3-yard line.
At the top of the fourth quarter, a delay of game penalty added five yards to South River's distance, but encroachment on Broadneck erased it. But then, as Foust tried to inch just three yards into the zone, the Bruins defense overpowered him. No touchdown, no field goal. Nothing. It had been 10 minutes on the clock since Broadneck's offense had gotten a chance to run.
And they did, all the way down to the Seahawks' 19-yard line. Ehrlich mailed the ball directly to Rashid Proctor, who didn't let the ball fall.
Roars erupted from the Broadneck sideline and bleachers. But it wasn't a touchdown.
The pass was ruled incomplete, and a play later, the Seahawks had possession again. With the missed chance, Broadneck officially hadn't scored since well before halftime.
And there wasn't much time left to change that.
Then, there was nothing left at all. After the game, the Broadneck seniors lined up on one side of coach Rob Harris, with the underclassmen on the other. It was roughly half and half.
The younger players embraced their teammates, heavy with emotion, for the last time.
“We just didn't get it done. The blame's on me. It starts at the top,” Harris said. “...I apologized to them. I felt horrible. Great senior class. We just didn't get it done.”
Broadneck’s Ethon Williams is tackled by several South River defenders during their Class 4A East Region semifinal Friday.
South River’s Joe Foy breaks free into the secondary against Broadneck.