GREENBELT – The Eleanor Roosevelt High School football team remained unbeaten by thumping Suitland 39-12 Saturday afternoon in the 4A South Region semifinals. With the victory, Roosevelt (11-0) will host DuVal (8-3), which edged Dr. Henry A. Wise in the other semifinal, in the 4A South Region final. The Raiders also loom as the overall […]
GREENBELT – The Eleanor Roosevelt High School football team remained unbeaten by thumping Suitland 39-12 Saturday afternoon in the 4A South Region semifinals.
With the victory, Roosevelt (11-0) will host DuVal (8-3), which edged Dr. Henry A. Wise in the other semifinal, in the 4A South Region final. The Raiders also loom as the overall second seed in the Maryland Class 4A state tournament after top-seeded Broadneck was upset by Old Mill, 16-0 Friday evening.
Saturday afternoon the Raiders’ primary focus was establishing the ground game and featured back Mike-Ryan Mofor. The senior came through in a big way, rushing for 303 yards and four touchdowns on 25 carries to lead the Raiders past the defending 4A South Region champions.
“When our offensive line blocks like that, nobody can beat us,” Mofor said. “They opened up some holes and I just ran through there. It means a lot to me knowing we get to host the region final. We’ve had some good teams here in the past, but Roosevelt hasn’t won a state title since 1999.”
Suitland coach Ed Shields commended his players for their late-season push to reach the playoffs. After opening the season with a pair of lopsided setbacks against Potomac and Roosevelt, Suitland won six of its last eight games and overtook Charles H. Flowers in the final weeks to earn the fourth seed in the 4A South bracket. Saturday afternoon the Rams were beaten by a deeper, more experienced team and they were unable to stop Mofor.
“What I liked about these kids is they kept fighting,” Shields said. “They wanted to beat Flowers and make the playoffs. We only had one returning starter on offense and only one returning starter on defense this season, but next year we’ll have eight or nine starters back on both sides of the ball. Roosevelt was just the better team today. They’re going to go far in the playoffs.”
Roosevelt wasted little time gaining the upper hand on Saturday and as halftime approached it appeared the game could reach the running clock margin of 35 points during the third quarter. On the Raiders’ first possession, Mofor scored on his first carry, a 54-yard scamper that gave the hosts a 6-0 lead. Then following a Suitland special teams’ blunder, Mofor carried twice for 25 yards and reached the end zone from 22 yards out for a 12-0 lead.
On its first possession of the second quarter, Roosevelt added to its advantage when Mofor found paydirt again. This time the senior carried three times for 37 yards and raced untouched for the last 20 to the end zone. Roosevelt was stalled on its next possession, but the Raiders’ defense had an immediate answer. Roosevelt senior defensive end Quinlen Dean picked up a fumble and raced 28 yards for a touchdown that gave the Raiders a 27-0 lead with 4:35 remaining in the half.
Suitland capitalized on a rare Roosevelt mistake when Floyd Little, III intercepted a pass and returned it to the Raiders’ 17. Then three plays later quarterback Titon Singleton connected with Milan Nell on an 18-yard scoring strike in the front left corner of the end zone to bring the Rams to within 27-6 and give the visitors a ray of hope heading into the locker room.