On a night when Mount Vernon’s soggy field was left littered with muddy footprints, Robert Carter and Cortez Taylor made the most of their marks.
The T.C. Williams duo rushed for 313 yards and five touchdowns as the Titans rolled to a 33-0 victory over Mount Vernon on Friday at Melvin B. Landes Stadium.
With quarterback Joe Hargrove missing his second game due to a fractured non-throwing wrist, T.C. Williams once again relied heavily on the ground game. But this time the Titans, who lost their opener to Robinson, cruised past a Mount Vernon team which has been outscored 75-3 in two games.
T.C. Williams (1-1) rushed for 369 yards and finished with 448 yards of total offense. Carter rushed 11 times for 162 yards and three touchdowns, while Taylor carried 15 times for 151 yards and two touchdowns.
The Titans used different combinations in the backfield, rotating Carter, Taylor and John Bray at quarterback. Bray is considered the true quarterback of the trio, but Carter, originally a safety, and Taylor, originally a receiver, were given different roles once Hargrove broke his wrist.
Carter took the snap on T.C. Williams’ first play from scrimmage and rushed for five yards. Bray then entered the game, took the second snap and handed off to Taylor, who was lined up at running back. Taylor turned up field and scampered 46 yards for a touchdown and a 7-0 Titans lead.
Taylor’s touchdown set the tone for an evening of big plays on the ground. The senior put T.C. Williams up 13-0 late in the first quarter when he scored on a 41-yard run.
“We have a quarterback, but he’s not confident (in) himself yet. He’s got to get better at it, so we’ve got to prove that we can run to be a successful team,” Taylor said. “… We played as a team. Thirty-three, zero proves it all.”
Carter scored on touchdown runs of 32 and 18 yards, respectively, in the second quarter, giving the Titans a 26-0 halftime lead.
Carter didn’t wait long to strike in the second half. After a penalty on the Titans’ first play of the third quarter pushed them back to their own 21-yard line, Carter took the snap and sprinted up the right sideline for a 79-yard touchdown.
Bray completed 4 of 6 passes for 74 yards. Bennie Jenkins caught three passes for 52 yards and Carter had one reception for 22 yards for the Titans.
“They played really well. I was just excited for them,” T.C. Williams coach Dennis Randolph said of the Titans. “We have some really good athletes and they needed that to build them some confidence. … (Taylor) and Robbie both are taking more snaps than we envisioned. We really wanted to be able to throw the football a little bit with Joe. … John last week didn’t play that well and really didn’t have a real good week of practice, but tonight he threw the ball like we expected. … If we can throw the ball a little bit and keep (the defense) off balance that will help open the running game up.”
While the T.C. Williams offense produced yards and put points on the board, the Titans defense held Mount Vernon scoreless and limited the Majors to 64 total yards two first downs. Mount Vernon (0-2) went three-and-out on its first six possessions and faced fourth-and-one on its seventh possession when time expired in the first half.
Running back Kenneth Harris led Mount Vernon with 58 rushing yards on 19 carries.
“We’re a young team and we just haven’t found our step yet,” Mount Vernon coach Tom Glynn said. “… We’ve got no swagger. We’re just unsure of ourselves.”
T.C. Williams 33, Mount Vernon 0
T.C. Williams 13 13 7 0 --- 33
Mount Vernon 0 0 0 0 --- 0
T --- Cortez Taylor 46 run (Manuel Benites kick), 9:08
T --- Taylor 41 run (kick failed), 1:11
T --- Robert Carter 32 run (run failed), 5:44
T --- Carter 18 run (Benites kick), 1:22
T --- Carter 79 run (Benites kick), 11:20
First Downs 15 2
Rushes-Yards 43-369 29-60
Comp-Att-Int 5-7-0 1-7-0
Passing Yards 79 4
Total Yards 448 64
Fumbles-Lost 3-0 2-1
Turnovers 0 1
RUSHING: T.C. Williams: Taylor 15-151; Carter 11-162; Raquan Brunson 6-32; Charles Garner 5-11; Matt Crawley 1-11; Oliver Jones 1-5; John Bray 1-3; Israel Richardson 1-2; Aaron Young 1-2; Rashid Conteh 1-(minus 9). Mount Vernon: Kenneth Harris 19-58; Andrew Sable 6-(minus 2); Emmanuel Tackie 3-3; Raquese Harris 1-1.
PASSING: T.C. Williams: 4-6-0 74; Doug Murphy 1-1 5. Mount Vernon: Sable 1-7-0 4.
RECEIVING: T.C. Williams: Bennie Jenkins 3-52; Carter 1-22; Jones 1-0; Tyrell Sitton 0-5. Mount Vernon: Dannish Decardi-Nelson 1-4.