Columbia broke out of a slump in a big way at Bolden Stadium on Thursday.
The Capitals ended a four-game losing streak with a rousing 55-12 region win against Keenan.
“We played our most physical game last week, and I think we all had a good feeling about our chances to start turning things around,” Columbia coach Kemper Amick said. “We played a tough schedule, and we saw a lot of good things happening. But we needed a win to get back some confidence, and the kids did it. Hopefully, we can keep rolling, build on this, finish up strong in the region and be ready for the playoffs.”
Anthony Brown, the star of the game, said things are falling into place.
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“I saw what we can do in the preseason, and now that we understand that it’s a team game, not an individual thing, we are ready to go,” the senior quarterback said. “This was by far our best game of the season.”
Brown was unstoppable in the first half as the Caps (2-5, 1-1 Region 3-2A) rolled up a 34-12 lead, scoring on all six of their offensive possessions. Brown ran for 117 yards and three touchdowns and was 7-for-7 passing for 154 yards and two touchdowns.
Brown broke five tackles on his 27-yard scoring run in the second quarter and then completed the first half with scoring strikes of 30 and 25 yards to Diante Petruso. He accounted for 271 of Columbia’s 304 yards in the opening half.
“Anthony’s been there all year, but he seems to really be in a groove over the last couple of games,” Amick said.
Brown finished with 296 yards of offense before leaving the game early.
Petruso had four catches, and all netted points. His first grab was for a two-point conversion and his three other catches resulted in 85 yards and three touchdowns.
Columbia finished with 446 offensive yards.
It was a frustrating performance by the Raiders on Senior Night.
Keenan (4-3, 1-1) finished with meager offensive yields — six first downs and 117 yards. The Raiders turned the ball over four times and were penalized 10 times for 110 yards. Two Keenan punts netted 3 yards.
One Raider highlight was an 89-yard kickoff return score by Peter Easaw late in the first quarter that cut Columbia’s lead to 14-6. The euphoria was short lived.
C — Anthony Brown 12 run (kick failed), 6:26
C — Brown 6 run (Diante Petruso pass from Brown), 2:59
K — Peter Easaw 89 kickoff return (kick failed), 2:44
C — Brown 27 run (Julio Alatorre kick), 2:59
K — Joshua McCord 34 pass from Titus Hopkins (pass failed), 9:22
C — Petruso 30 pass from Brown (Alatorre kick), 6:48
C — Petruso 25 pass from Brown (kick failed), 1:04
C — Brown 6 run (Alatorre kick), 6:44
C — Lorenzo Gilmore 30 run (Alex Parham kick), 0:47
C — William Gossette 6 run (Parham kick), 9:21
Rushing: C, Brown 27-142, X. Mack 5-15, Gilmore 8-51, Gossette 1-6. K, Hyman 5-21, Hopkins 9-3, Austin 1-2, Easaw 2-5.
Passing: C, Brown 8-7-0-154, Gossette 1-1-0-30. K, Hopkins 3-13-3-73.
Receiving: C, Jackson 1-15, J. Mack 1-18, X. Mack 2-19, Gossette 1-47, Petruso 3-85. K, McCord 1-34, Easaw 1-39, Dunbar 1-7.