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Stone Bridge Dominates Jefferson in Liberty Football Opener

Bulldogs stay unbeaten with 56-0 triumph.

The Stone Bridge Bulldogs began their quest for a 5th consecutive Liberty District championship with a convincing 56-0 win over the Colonials of the Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology on Friday, 25 September 2009. QB Brian Rody was nearly perfect in his passing game, completing 12 of 14 passes for 246 yards and 2 TDs, all in the first half, as Stone Bridge jumped to a big lead in the 1st quarter and Coach Mickey Thompson began pulling his starters early in the contest.

Rody’s excellent passing effort would have been perfect, save for a dropped pass and a receiver who stumbled while trying to maneuver to make the reception. Rody’s performance did wonders for his season totals, bringing his completion percentage over 50%; he has now thrown for 445 yards and 3 TDs in his first four games as a Bulldog, with just 1 interception.

In addition to Rody’s performance, Marcus Harris made the most of the opportunities he was given, scoring 4 TDs on just 7 touches (3 rushes, 35 yards, 2 TD; 4 catches, 104 yards, 2 TD). Harris now has a team-leading 453 rushing yards and 6 TDs on 80 carries for the season thus far. Sophomore Stan Johnson was Rody’s favorite receiver against Jefferson, hauling in 6 passes for 88 yards.

While the offense was amassing 483 yards of total offense, the Stone Bridge defense was stifling for the Colonials, holding them to just 32 yards of total offense for the game, including minus-28 rushing yards on 28 carries. The Colonials were unable to sustain any drives for most of the game; they did not earn a 1st down until midway through the second quarter, and that came courtesy of a Stone Bridge pass interference penalty.

It took very little time in the game for the Colonials to dig themselves a big hole; starting at their own 20, the Colonials lost 13 yards on a bad snap from center, and 2 plays later QB Kevin Karn was sacked on his own 2 yard line for a 12-yard loss. A short punt put the Bulldogs in business on the Jefferson 26; 7 plays later, the Bulldogs took the lead and never looked back.

The Jefferson offense was forced to punt the ball away on all 6 of its 1st half possessions, the Bulldogs, on the other hand, scored touchdowns on all 6 of theirs (not including a 1-play possession just before the half). With the score 42-0 in the Bulldogs’ favor at the intermission, Coach Thompson kept the offense on the ground in the second half, showcasing some of the Bulldogs’ freshman talent, with promising QB Ryan Burns at the helm and Sean Rankin-Bell and Warren Miles at the running back positions. Rankin-Bell impressed with a 7-carry, 105-yard performance, highlighted by a 74-yard TD run in the 4th quarter; Miles gained 25 yards on 5 carries, and Burns gained 11 on three carries. Senior Mike Girdy also saw 2nd half action, scoring on a 10-yard run to cap a 12-play, 65-yard drive to start the 3rd quarter.

With the win, Stone Bridge improves its record to 4-0, and 1-0 in the Liberty District. The win over Jefferson is the 29th consecutive Liberty District regular season victory for Stone Bridge, dating back to 2005, when the Bulldogs moved to AAA and joined the Northern Region. The next game for the Bulldogs is at home against Marshall High School on Friday, 2 October. Marshall is 0-4 (0-1 in the Liberty District) so far this season. Thomas Jefferson, whose record goes to 0-4 (0-2), will host Washington-Lee (1-3)(1-1).

<b>NOTE</b>: Two Stone Bridge school records have been set thus far this season, both by junior Spenser Rositano. As previously reported, he set the record for the longest punt return in school history, with his 75-yard return against West Springfield on 17 September. That return eclipsed the 72-yard return made by Khalil Conteh against Bishop O’Connell HS in 2004.

Rositano has also set the school record for longest punt; in fact, his 68-yard punt against Heritage and his 63-yard punt against West Springfield are the two longest punts in school history.