Mallard Creek and Vance are University City-area football rivals known for their ability to put points on the scoreboard.
But their IMeck 4A opener at Vance on Friday night was a defensive standoff early until Mallard Creek got untracked for a 27-13 victory.
Cameren Lowery scored on two short touchdown runs and quarterback Jadyn Washington threw a 53-yard touchdown pass to Lovelle Williams for the Mavericks.
Records: Mallard Creek 5-0, 1-0; Vance 3-2, 0-1
Three who mattered
Mallard Creek defense: It’s hard to pick individual standouts, but the Mavericks kept a potent Vance offense stifled for much of the game. Senior defensive back Malcolm Franklin produced the game’s only turnover, a big fourth-quarter interception.
Nigel Summerville, QB, Vance: The senior completed 11 of 21 passes for 147 yards and two touchdowns and kept the Cougars dangerous on offense in the second half after they fell behind 17-0 at the break.
Joshua McIntyre, RB, Mallard Creek: He didn’t get in the end zone but was a big spark in the Mavericks’ rushing attack by committee. He had several key runs in a 109-yard night on 12 carries.
▪ Both teams were hampered by penalties, especially in the first half, but in different ways. For Mallard Creek, two 15-yarders slowed early drives. For Vance it wasn’t the yardage but the number of times the flag was thrown, and it kept the Cougars from finding a rhythm until late in the game.
▪ Vance senior wide receiver Gary Williams, who scored the Cougars’ first touchdown on a 64-yard catch and run from Summerville, committed to Colorado State on Wednesday.
▪ Vance scored in the last 30 seconds on a 21-yard pass from Summerville to Jaylen Riley.
What’s next: Mallard Creek travels to Lake Norman on Friday. Vance plays host to Hopewell.