Gaels win football opener, 35-20, at St. Mary’s-Ryken

In one of the new classic early season high school football rivalries, Mount St. Joseph traveled to St. Mary’s-Ryken in Leonardtown, Friday night, and defeated the host Knights, 35-20, to capture the Lambert Cup for a second straight year in this annual battle between the Xaverian Brother schools.

The Gaels made history with the win, becoming the first team in the six year history of the series to win a road game. St. Joe, which won last year’s game in Irvington, 49-7, now leads the series 4-2.

MSJ took a 21-13 halftime lead with a pair of touchdown runs by senior star Marlowe Wax and a touchdown pass from junior quarterback Billy Atkins to fellow junior Dont’e Thornton.

Ryken closed within 28-20 after three quarters, but the Gaels scored the only TD of the fourth quarter to close out the victory. Atkins, who completed 21-of-35 passes for 320 yards and three scores, threw for two more scores in the second half – a 45-yard toss to Thornton in the third quarter and a 24-yard strike to junior Andre Crawley in the fourth. He was, however, intercepted three times, one which was returned 100 yards for a touchdown by Ryken’s Jordan Scarbrough.

Crawley caught 10 balls for 156 yards in the contest and Thornton gained 85 yards on three receptions, including the two scores. In addition, junior Semaj Henson had seven reception for 75 yards.

Wax dominated in the running game, carrying the ball 19 times for 216 yards and the two scores. Defensively, DaShawn Jones had two interceptions, Amir Hall had one pick and senior Tyler Leavy had two sacks.

For St. Mary’s-Ryken, junior quarterback Trevor Nored threw a pair of touchdown passes.

Pictured above (from left): Mount St. Joseph’s Tony Atkins, Tyler Leavy, Jordan Oliver and Marlowe Wax pose with the Lambert Cup after Friday’s 35-20 season opening win over St. Mary’s-Ryken.

MSJ 14 7 7 7 — 35
SMR 7 6 7 0 — 20
MSJ – Marlowe Wax 5 run (Martin kick)
SMR – Jordon Scarbrough 100 yard interception return (kick good)
MSJ – Dont’e Thornton 16 pass from Billy Atkins (Martin Kick)

SMR – Garrett Watkins 15 pass from Trevor Nored (kick failed)
MSJ – Wax 15 run (Martin Kick)

SMR – Will Johnson 20 pass from Nored (kick good)
MSJ – Thornton 45 pass from Atkins (Martin kick)

MSJ – Crawley 24 pass from Atkins (Martin kick)