By BOB PARASILITI
11:17 PM EDT, October 12, 2012
As a perk any good craftsman deserves, Isiaha Smith got an opportunity to step back and look at his work.
And it only made the South Hagerstown running back’s masterpiece all the better on Friday night.
Smith took advantage of a slight offensive adjustment — taking a step further back in the formation — and used it to score four second-quarter touchdowns to help the Rebels run away from Catoctin 40-6 in an MVAL Antietam contest.
The scores highlighted a 280-yard rushing night for the junior, who continues to ramble his way up South’s statistical ladder. The Rebels remained undefeated through seven games.
“We had to settle in and got the offense going,” said Smith, who ran for scores of 74, 1, 35 and 19 yards as the Rebels took a 27-6 halftime lead. “Sometimes I lined up a little further back. That extra step allowed me to read the defense a little more.”
Smith needed that step to take everything in stride.
Catoctin (3-4, 2-2) played aggressive early, getting upfield and catching Smith from behind in the first quarter. The Cougars bottled up the Rebels’ first possession, then turned around for a four-play, 49-yard drive capped by a 5-yard touchdown run by Collin Schildt to take a 6-0 lead with 7:58 remaining in the first quarter.
Peyton Laramore set up the drive with a 35-yard pass to Tyler Davis to put the Cougars on the doorstep.
It ended up being Catoctin’s only hurrah, as South’s offense and defense settled in for the long haul.
On the Rebels’ first offensive play of the second quarter, coming at the 9:58 mark, Smith got a little deeper in his setup to receive the ball. The first move was a powerful one over right tackle to break free for the 74-yard score.
“There are times we line him up even with the quarterback, and others we put him behind the quarterback,” said South coach Toby Peer. “We decided to make him step back.”
The step back was a leap forward for the Rebels.
South rolled up 234 of its 269 first-half yards from that point on. The Rebels basically used Catoctin’s aggressiveness against it.
“We thought this was going to be a trap game for us,” Peer said. “Their offense is hard to defend and it was the coldest night that we have played on. They are well-coached, but we got settled in.”
South’s defense got off the field in three plays, allowing the Rebels to roll with a 51-yard drive, started by a 35-yard run by quarterback Brandon Jackson. Four plays later, Smith popped in from the 1.
He later went over right tackle again, this time to break off the 35-yard score. He revisited the sweet spot with his 19-yard jaunt with 1:16 left in the half.
Smith rolled up 170 of his 190 first-half yards in the second quarter.
The Rebels finished off the game as Ramal Martinez scored from the 3 in the third quarter and Michael Hill ran in a 17-yard keeper in the fourth to cap the scoring.
In the meantime, South’s defense asserted itself with two interceptions, a fumble recovery and five sacks to keep Catoctin from getting any closer.
“I’m really proud of the kids,” Peer said. “They came in here in a hostile environment against a tough offense to defend and in the cold and played well.”
South finished with 441 yards of total offense — 445 yards rushing and minus-4 passing.
Jackson followed Smith’s lead to roll up another 87 yards, while Hill finished with 55 and Martinez added 37.
Catoctin finished with 225 yards of offense. Laramore passed for 91 yards, while Devin Watkins was the top runner with 43 yards.
South Hagerstown 40, Catoctin 6
South 0 27 7 6 — 40
Catoctin 6 0 0 0 — 6
C – Collin Schlidt 5 run (run failed)
SH – Isiaha Smith 74 run (kick failed)
SH – Smith 1 run (Craig Coffin kick)
Sh – Smith 35 run (Coffin kick)
SH – Smith 19 run (Coffin kick)
SH – Ramal Martinez 3 run (Coffin kick)
SH – Michael Hill 17 run (kick failed)
First Downs 16 11
Rushes-yards 44-445 47-147
Passing Yards minus-4 91
Att.-Comp.-Int 7-2-1 14-5-2
Total Yardage 51-441 61-225
Fumbles-lost 4-0 5-1
Punts-avg. 5-32.2 7-35.1
Penalties-yards 9-76 5-29
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