SMR comes from behind to stay undefeated
Marks helps SMR rally from 24-point deficit
Kristian Marks tossed a 26-yard touchdown pass to Camden Boyle with less than three minutes remaining as host St. Mary’s Ryken stormed back to stun St. Mary’s of Annapolis 27-24 at home on Friday night.
The Knights, who trailed 24-0 at halftime and 24-20 at the end of the third quarter, completed the program’s biggest comeback on Marks’ touchdowns pass.
The Knights started the game-winning drive at their own 30-yard line and nine plays later, faced fourth down at the Saints’ 26 with no timeouts. Brady called for Empty, a corner route to the short side of the field, and Marks hit Boyle.
“Kristian was able to step up in the pocket to buy an extra second and then let it go,” Brady said “It was beautiful.”
St. Mary’s Ryken, playing an independent schedule this fall, is now 6-0. It had won just four games the previous two seasons.
“I’m just so proud of these kids,” Knights firstyear head coach Aaron Brady said. “I think we have something special going. I have to give a lot of respect to the team we played. They did an incredible job of preparing for us, the seniors and the result they had and I have to applaud the community and the student body — of course, the parents won’t leave — but the
students could have left, but they and the teachers stayed.”
The spectators stayed, but Marks was almost forced to leave after suffering an ankle injury on the Knights’ second offensive possession of the game.
The senior, who was taped up and barely able to walk, missed the rest of the first half and did not look good when he warmed up after halftime.
“The coach who warmed him up said he can’t play,” Brady said. “But [Marks] said he wanted to try and said, ‘Coach, let me have one series.’”
Marks promptly led
the Knights down the field and put them on the board. St. Mary’s of Annapolis was called for a 15-yard penalty on the point-after so the Knights kicked off from the Saints’ 45-yard line and recovered the surprise onside kick. Two plays later, St. Mary’s Ryken was within 24-14 with 5 minutes 38 seconds left in the third.
“That energized the defense and the team,” Brady said.
Marks completed 16 of 29 passes for 239 yards and four touchdowns and two interceptions.
Boyle had six catches for 85 yards and three touchdowns, Daniel Keith hauled in three receptions for 62 yards and Will Johnson added four grabs for 50 yards. Colyn Webster made two
catches for 30 yards and a score. Keith also caught a 2-point conversion.
Calvin Bell had 133 of the Knights’ 155 rushing yards on 19 carries.
Jalyn Phillips had a team-high 20 tackles, including 17 unassisted, Michael McIntosh had 14 and Jamarcus Holt and Anthony Wilson each added 11. Phillips and Will McKay each had a tackle for a loss. D’Angelo Tull had two passes defensed, a fumble recovery and a caused fumble.
“We moved the ball, we just didn’t score,” Brady said of trailing at halftime. “It was pretty somber [in the lockerroom], but I went in there and talked about what we had to do. The biggest thing was there was no magic for us play- ing better; we had to execute better and play as a team. I told them not to look at the scoreboard, and that if we just go out there and play better, we’ll learn from this experience. I told them, ‘If you win the third quarter, you’ll win this game’ and I really believe that with momentum and the way things go.”
St. Mary’s Ryken travels to Montgomery County to take on Bullis at 7 p.m. Friday.
St. Mary’s Ryken’s Jalyn Phillips, top, and D’Angelo Tull pull down St. Mary’s of Annapolis quarterback Sam Weisshaar in Friday’s win.
St. Mary’s Ryken’s Will McKay, right, makes an ankle tackle on Saints’ quarterback Will Weisshaar during Friday’s 27-24 win.