Rustin Wins District Title in Third Year of Program
Traditionally it takes 5-7 years for a new high school football program to even start to assert itself.
Bayard Rustin did it in its second year with a 8-4 record, runner-up finish in the Ches-Mont American Division and a berth in the District 1 AAA playoffs.
In the third year of the program Rustin can now lay claim to the Ches-Mont American Divsion championship AND the District 1 AAA championship as a last minute goal line stand held up in a 21-14 win over Upper Moreland Friday nite at Colonial Stadium on the campus of Plymouth Whitemarsh High School in Plymouth Meeting.
“It’s great,” said Rustin’s Chase Hoyt, one of the defensive heroes on the last minute goal line stand by knocking a Mike Rosenbaum first and goal pass away. “I’ve been playing football for seven years and this is just the best feeling I’ve had,” he added.
“It feels great,” said Golden Knight Head Coach Mike St. Clair after getting the traditional water bucket doucing from Will Ridgeway and Rondell White when asked how wet he felt.
White scored the game winning touchdown with 4:42 to play in the game on a 8 yard run that capped a 63 yard 8 White carry drive. White finished the game with 193 yards on 38 carries.
“Coach said I didn’t need to break a big run, just get 4-5 yards a carry and thats what i was trying to do.” said White. White longest carry of the night was a 20 yard run.
Lost in all the excitement was the fact that Rustin (12-1) avenged their only loss of the season as the Golden Bears (10-2 overall) beat them 13-7 in double overtime in the second game of the season.
Rustin rushed out to a 14-0 lead on the strength of both Rondell White and his younger brother Rahmir.
Rondell scored the first touchdown of the game for the Golden Knights on a 3 yard run the second time Rustin touched the football with 1:15 left in the first quarter. Rahmir (10 carries 91 yards) scored the second touchdown on a 14 yard run in the second quarter, just 4:03 ater his brother scored. Will Mau booted all 3 extra points, but also had a 33 yard field goal blocked by Dmirti Young in the third quarter that ignited Upper Moreland.
Stifled by the usually stingy Rustin defense in the first half, the Golden Bears came alive in the second half.
On the first play following the blocked field goal Rosenbaum found Tom Knox wide open at mid-field and Knox out-ran both White’s to the end zone for an 80 yard touchdown that cut the Golden Knight lead to 14-6.
After a high snap forced Rondell, who is also the punter to attempt a run, Upper Moreland tied the game at 14 as Chris Smallwood scored on a 5 yard run with 8:48 left in the contest to cut the lead 14-12. Smallwood added the 2 point conversion and suddenly we had a football game. Smallwood finished with 133 yards on 27 carries after being held to 12 carries and 37 yards in the fist half.
Give Coach (Adam) Beach credit, he called an outstanding game all night over there,” said St. Clair.
Following White’s go ahead touchdown Upper Moreland took the ball on their own 35 yard line and drove 60 yards down to the Rustin 5 yard line with 8 seconds remaining. But in the drive, Smallwood was injured and never returned. Hoyt knocked away the first Rosenbaum pass and Ronye Dennis dropped the second down pass. With two-tenth of a second left, this reporter was thinking draw play to try to catch the defense off guard and the call was correct as fullback Christian Kehoe got the ball but was stuffed at the line of scrimmage and the wild celebration began.
With the win, Rustin now plays District 12 Champion Archbishop Wood next Friday Nite back at Colonial Stadium at 7:00 p.m. while Upper Moreland still has their annual Thanksgiving Day game with neighboring Hatboro Horsham Thursday Morning.
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