As soon as Stacy Lipkins received the handoff he knew it would finish as something special. The Coolidge high school senior running back didn’t need much, just a block or two, and the rest he was confident he could finish himself. Wearing jersey No .1 for a steadily rising Coolidge Colts team, he took the handoff and didn’t look back until 74 yards later, after he had just shredded the Ballou Knights’ defense to put his team up 13-0 at the top of the second quarter on an autumn-like evening on Sept. 16.
“I just seen a hole open and I just burst right through it,” recalled Lipkins about his game-breaking run. “With my speed, I’m going to get there; I’m going to get in the end zone.”
But Lipkins wasn’t the only Colt to get into the end zone that night as Coolidge downed Ballou 47-6 in a battle of schools from Washington, D.C. in front of a stunned crowd at the Knights’ home opener and first game of the season. After finishing last season as a runner-up in the District of Columbia Interscholastic Athletic Association (DCIAA) championship game, many were expecting the Knights to put on a better show. But without the guidance of coach Moses Ware, who stepped down earlier in the year to become an assistant coach at Bowie, Ballou was helpless to a quick-striking Colts club.
Despite an impressive showing from Lipkins (121 rushing yards), his teammate, Fellonte Misher (four catches, 81 yards, three touchdowns), was even better. The senior duo combined to score the first four touchdowns of the evening as Misher’s speed and jumping ability simply made it look easy. The combination of Lipkins and Misher jetted the Colts to a 34-0 lead in the third quarter. Ballou finally got on the board after senior running back De’jau Stevens took a kickoff return 75 yards for a score with just over two minutes left in the third quarter.
After a turbulent 2010, where Coolidge introduced Natalie Randolph as the first female coach of a high school football boys team since the 1980s, the Colts appear to be on track this year to finish strong. Blowing out Ballou, who had to forfeit a spot in last year’s DCIAA title game due to the use of an ineligible player, speaks volumes for where the Colts might be headed.
“They’re the best. They’re great,” gushed Randolph after the game about her thoughts on her team. “They’re leaders, we have no problems, they’re doing well in school. You couldn’t ask for anything more.”
Coolidge improved to 2-0 while Ballou dropped to 0-1 to begin the year.