If you like high scoring football matches that aren’t decided until the final minutes, then you would have loved the Patterson Clippers vs. City College Knights contest on Oct. 1.

The two Baltimore City Division I schools exchanged the lead four different times Saturday night, scoring a combined 57 points before Patterson eventually escaped with a 32-25 victory.

The Clippers fell behind early after giving up two quick touchdowns in the first quarter.

City College junior quarterback Troy Robinson tossed two touchdowns in the opening period, including an 85-yard touchdown pass to Tyreke Richburg, which gave the Knights a 12-0 lead after failing on both extra-point attempts.

Patterson responded with a touchdown bomb, a 73-yard touchdown pass by senior quarterback Craig Oliver to receiver Josh Beasley, which cut the lead to 12-8 after the Clippers scored a 2-point conversion. Patterson took their first lead of the game just a minute before halftime with a 57-yard touchdown pass from Oliver to senior running back Fess Williams.

City regained the lead not long after halftime as Patterson fumbled the ball on the second half-opening kickoff, giving the Knights the ball at the Clippers’ 15-yard line. City’s Robinson ran in for a 12-yard touchdown just two plays later, pushing the Knights ahead, 18-14.

The Knights pushed the lead up to 25-14 just two drives later as Robinson found Richburg up the sideline for a 27-yard touchdown pass-and-catch, followed by an extra-point converted.

The game appeared to be ending in City’s favor as Patterson’s Oliver threw an interception on the ensuing drive, giving the ball back to the Knights with a comfortable lead. However, a muffed snap and fumble by City’s Robinson gave the ball right back to Patterson deep in City’s red zone.

Two plays later saw Patterson’s Beasley run in for a seven-yard touchdown to cut the lead to 25-20 at the top of the fourth quarter. City then fumbled the ball again on the following drive, giving the Clippers an opportunity to retake the lead. Patterson took advantage, driving the field and scoring on a 1-yard touchdown run by Oliver to go up, 26-25, with seven minutes left in game. City then fumbled for the third straight time, turning it back over to the Clippers. This time, Patterson put a nail in City’s coffin with a 57-yard touchdown pass from Oliver to Myrek Lee Fowlkes that gave the Clippers the final 32-25 score lead.

The last time Patterson scored at least 30 points they were on the losing end of a close battle, falling to Digital Harbor, 35-34, on Sept. 9, their only loss of the season.

“It’s a great feeling, knowing we were able to survive a very tough division battle and come out with our third straight win,” Patterson coach Corey Johnson told the AFRO. “We came in to this game treating it like a playoffs game, and that’s the way you have to treat games played in the Baltimore City Division I conference because its only four teams that can actually reach the postseason from our division. Our guys knew they couldn’t afford to lose this one.”

Patterson now advances to a 4-1 overall record, while City falls to 2-2 overall. The Clippers will now prepare for another tough division battle, this time against the undefeated Poly Engineers (5-0 overall).

“We keep a 24-hour rule in effect, just like the pros do,” Johnson said. “We’ll celebrate this victory for the rest of the weekend, but starting Monday, it’s back to business in preparation for Poly.”

Click here to view a video of post-game lockerroom celebration chants by the Patterson players.


Perry Green

AFRO Sports Editor