One of the marks of a good team is being able to overcome obstacles and win games when they don’t play well.
Charlotte Catholic, No. 6 in the Observer’s Sweet 16, showed that Friday night, as they overcame a spirited effort from host Olympic to defeat the Trojans 31-14 at Dave Johnson Stadium in a game that was much closer than the score indicated.
“I’m glad that’s over,” Catholic head coach Mike Brodowicz said. “I have to do a better job, but give Olympic credit; they play very hard and made things real tough on us.”
Catholic (6-1, 3-0 SoMeck 8) led 14-7 at half, thanks in part to Jaret Anderson’s 53-yard scoring run on the second play of the game, and led 17-7 heading to the fourth quarter.
Olympic (2-5, 0-3) picked up good field position near midfield thanks to a good kick return by Joe Lamar, and cut the lead to 17-14 with 9:47 left when Jeremiah Dorsey threw a beautiful 16-yard fade pass to Torry Baker in the left corner of the end zone.
Catholic took over at their own 27 and penalties pushed them back to their own 11. On third and 26 Anderson bolted 89 yards for what looked like a back-breaking touchdown but there were two problems.
First, Catholic was called for holding to bring the play back, and second, Anderson was injured with a high ankle sprain as he went into the end zone. His status for next week’s huge showdown with South Meck will be determined this week, according to Brodowicz.
Facing third down and long again, quarterback John Walton connected with Ryan Miller for a 38-yard reception and a first down. Catholic then drove and scored with 5:47 left on a one-yard run by Miller.
“They (Olympic) were putting everyone in the box and made it difficult for us to open holes running,” Brodowicz said. “After Jaret went out we wanted to get the ball to Ryan. He’s so versatile and can do so many things (Miller completed two passes, caught three, rushed 11 times and accounted for three touchdowns) and he made some big plays.”