Mount Vernon falls to T.C. Williams; Hayfield wins to take district title

Jason Lewis

Mount Vernon linebacker Jason Lewis and Bernard Danke (behind ballcarrier) make a tackle on fourth down to stop a T.C. Williams drive in the red zone on Friday night.

Quarterback Tim Heltzel’s three second-half touchdowns were not enough as T.C. Williams hung on for a 38-31 win at Mount Vernon on Friday night.

The loss came after a strong second half by Mount Vernon that nearly brought the Majors back from a mostly dreadful first half performance. Mount Vernon looked overwhelmed as T.C. jumped to a 28-6 halftime lead. The Majors offense — other than a first-quarter scoring drive capped by a Darrien Newton touchdown run — could not find a rhythm against the Titans fast and physical defense. And on the other side of the ball, the Majors could not stop T.C.’s attack either through the ground or the air.

The third quarter looked like much of the same on offense as Mount Vernon turned the ball over on downs on its first two drives. But the Majors defense was finally able to slow the Titans and force multiple punts. On T.C.’s third punt of the quarter, Mount Vernon linebacker Jason Lewis gave the Majors the spark they needed when he blocked a punt that the Majors ended up recovering at the T.C. 8-yard line.

The next play Heltzel escaped pressure and hit wide receiver Kofi Kwarteng for a touchdown, bringing the Mount Vernon fans to life and making it a ballgame again.

Newton scored on the two-point conversion to make it 28-14, and then things got really interesting. Mount Vernon’s Jordan Reid recovered the ensuing squib kickoff, again giving the Majors great field position. Mount Vernon made it a seven-point game a few plays later when Heltzel found Kwarteng again for another touchdown to cut it to 28-21.

But seven points would be as close as the Majors got. T.C. hit a field goal early in the fourth quarter to take a 31-21, and a few minutes later a Mount Vernon gaffe gave T.C. it’s only second half touchdown. Titans returner Kai Cole caught the Majors sleeping when he picked up a punt that was about to roll dead and sprinted past Mount Vernon players who thought the play was over. Cole’s touchdown put T.C. up by 17, but Mount Vernon was not done yet. 

Heltzel, a few plays after leaving the game with an injury, led the Majors on a drive and hit Darius Jones for a touchdown in the left corner of the end zone. 

Mount Vernon’s defense held T.C. and got the Majors the ball back with 2:17 left. Mount Vernon’s drive stalled deep in Titans territory, and rather than go for it on fourth day the Majors chose to kick a field goal and try to recover the onside kick. Samuel Renzi did his part by nailing a field goal, but the Majors could not corral the onside kickoff, and T.C. ran out the clock.

Mount Vernon’s final drive also included a bizarre 18-minute delay after the stadium lights went out during the middle of a play.

Mount Vernon falls to 7-2 on the year, and 1-2 in the Gunston District. Next week the Majors travel to West Potomac for their final regular season game in the annual Battle of the Highway. West Potomac is 4-5 after losing at home to Westfield, 21-14.

Hayfield wins district

Hayfield beat Annandale 50-43 on the road Friday night to capture the Gunston District title.

The Hawks (7-2, 4-0) were once again led by senior Brian Cobbs, who was playing quarterback again after starting last week. Cobbs threw for four touchdowns and ran for two more, while Running back Kylan Booker’s 25-yard TD run in the fourth quarter sealed the win.