Bishop England topples Baptist Hill 31-12 in season opener victory
The offensive attack was balanced. The defensive plan forced four turnovers. And, just as importantly, coach John Cantey was his old self – healthy.
All was right in the Bishop England High School football world Friday night as the Bishops traveled to Baptist Hill and came away with a 31-12 victory in their season opener.
First, the offense. The Bishops tallied 359 yards in offense and most of it came from the arm of Cam Costa and the legs of Michael Long.
Costa completed 12 of 26 passing for 193 yards and three touchdowns after winning the starting job during fall camp.
Long was just as impressive. The junior carried 22 times for 122 yards and a pair of touchdowns as the Bishops sent the Bobcats to their second loss in as many games.
Second, the defense. The defense was just as impressive as the Bobcats struggled for three quarters. The Bobcats finally found the end zone for a pair of scores in the final 12 minutes – when the game was already settled.
Finally, there was Cantey. The affable coach missed a good portion of last season as he dealt with health issues. But he’s back and ready to lead the Bishops, who should be in the hunt for a Region 7-AAA championship – and a playoff berth.
“It felt good to be out there and be myself,” said Cantey, who led the Bishops to state titles in 2011 and ’12. “Last year, when I was there, I was just there to coach. I didn’t interact with the entire team. My focus was on the game. Friday, it was good to interact with the entire team, the younger players who were on the sidelines.”
The Bishops took the first step in bouncing back from last year’s season, which had only three victories in the win column. The Bishops led Baptist Hill 7-0 after the first quarter and were in control, 14-0, at halftime. The Bishops led 24-0 and three quarters.
Costa, who finished with 44 yards rushing and 359 total yards, completed five passes to Sullivan Clair for 73 yards and a touchdown. Eddie Marinaro had two catches, including one for a score. Long, who led the rushing attack, caught two passes for 20 yards, including a TD.
On defense, Jarren McCoy and Charlie Michel recorded interceptions, while William Anderson and Nathaniel Everman recovered fumbles.
Nick Defazio was a bright spot on special teams with four PATs and a 41-yard field goal.
The Bishops created a lot of energy in Week 1. But, the Bishops had to shut down as the governor declared a state of emergency on Sunday as Hurricane Dorian threatened the state. A mandatory evacuation was ordered for Monday. The school was closed (at press time) and practices could not be held. The Week 2 game against James Island was up in the air. Cantey said if the forecast became reality, there was a good chance the game would be moved to Sept. 9. The Bishops are scheduled to play at Philip Simmons on Sept. 13.