Football

Beechcroft 34, Mifflin 19

Cougars take sting out of Punchers

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In theory, it seemed like the Beechcroft High School football team could have run the same two plays with success all night against Mifflin.

When senior quarterback Maurice Hale wasn’t tossing jump balls downfield to his receivers, he was stampeding through gaping holes on keepers.

The result was a 34-19 victory for the host Cougars on Oct. 5. It marked the 10th consecutive time and 21st time in 23 years that Beechcroft beat Mifflin, a City League-North Division rival.

“Every year, they hype this game up like they’re finally going to beat us,” Hale said. “Give them credit for coming back on us, but in the end, we thought we were a little too strong up front and on the defensive side of the ball for them.”

As usual, Hale played a vital role for Beechcroft (5-1, 4-0). He rushed for 195 yards and three touchdowns on 31 carries and completed eight of 14 passes for 170 yards and two touchdowns.

It took just three plays for Hale to show off his arm. On third-and-12, he threw a pass downfield to Khaleed Franklin, who out-jumped a defender for a 50-yard gain.

On the next play, Hale recovered an errant shotgun snap, ran around the pocket to avoid three would-be tacklers and threw to Antonio McCloud for a 9-yard touchdown.

Mifflin (5-2, 3-1) bounced back with a big play as quarterback Javonte Bing hit Kameron Green on a 51-yard touchdown pass.

The Cougars, however, scored on their next two series for a 21-6 halftime lead. Both drives were capped by 1-yard touchdown plunges by Hale.

The second touchdown was set up by a 33-yard jump-ball play from Hale to Franklin.

“We’ve done that all year long, coming out slow and forcing ourselves to come from behind,” Mifflin coach Gregg Miller said. “We lost contain on several of their big plays, but the big reason we lost tonight was we just made too many mistakes.”

The Punchers drove 52 yards for a touchdown on the opening series of the third quarter. Derrick Pope capped the drive with a 21-yard run to make it 21-13.

Early in the fourth quarter, Hale connected with Da’Laun Young on a 35-yard jump ball for a touchdown. Hale added a 15-yard touchdown run with 2:28 left.

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Team 1 2 3 4 Final
MIFFLIN 6 0 7 6 19
BEECHCROFT 7 14 0 13 34

B -- McCloud 9 pass from Hale (Ahmed kick)
M -- Green 51 pass from Bing (kick failed)
B -- Hale 1 run (Ahmed kick)
B -- Hale 1 run (Ahmed kick)
M -- Pope 21 run (Littlefield kick)
B -- Young 35 pass from Hale (Ahmed kick)
B -- Hale 15 run (kick failed)
M -- Green 77 kick return (run failed)

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