TOWSON, Md. -- In a game that featured a three-touchdown performance by Caleb Porzel, big-play touchdowns by game-breakers Tavon Austin and Devon Smith and the state's leading receiver throwing a touchdown pass, it was the right foot of the state's all-time leading extra point kicker that pinned down the Washington D.C. team's 32-21 victory over the Baltimore squad in the inaugural Crab Bowl at Towson University on Saturday.
Austin's 81-yard touchdown on a reverse pass from Arundel's Alec Lemon pulled Baltimore within 29-21 with 5 minutes, 30 seconds remaining. However, D.C. secured the victory when Marc Magas converted a 26-yard field goal with 1:03 left.
MVPs: Porzel was named the D.C. MVP. The Good Counsel senior who is committed to Maryland had a game-high 40 rushing yards and scored on runs of 2, 9 and 2 yards.
Austin, the Baltimore MVP, broke an 84-yard kickoff return for Baltimore's first score and added an 81-yard pass reception in the fourth quarter. He had a team-high 17 rushing yards on five carries.
Forestville's DeOnte Arnett had four tackles and 1.5 sacks to earn lineman of the game honors.
Game-Changing Play: Facing fourth-and-18 at the 28, the D.C. team turned to a WCAC combination as DeMatha's Emmanuel McPhearson hauled in a 26-yard pass from Good Counsel's Tyler Campbell. On the very next play, Porzel scored from the 2 giving the D.C. team a two-score lead at 29-14.
Reversal of fortune: Lemon, who set public school state records for recptions and receiving touchdowns found himself launching a pass toward Austin on a reverse. Although the pass covered only 10 yards in the air, Austin took it the rest of the way for an 81-yard touchdown.
Returns to remember: Austin scored on an 84-yard kickoff return as a quick response to the D.C. team's second touchdown, trimming the D.C. lead to 16-7. The second half started with Westlake's Devon Smith bobbling the kickoff, then returning it 98 yards for a score.
D-fence: Gilman senior Brandon Copeland, playing for Baltimore, was in on 13 tackles and two sacks to pace all defensive players. Suitland's John Darr, play for the D.C. team, had 12.5 tackles and .5 sack. Loyola's Matt Heacock, playing for Baltimore, and Seneca Valley's Xavier Hughes, playing for D.C., each had seven tackles.
Playing D: Carroll Washington first made a name for himself as a sophomore quarterback, leading Edmondson to a Class 2A state title in 2006. He no longer plays quarterback and his selection to the Crab Bowl was for defensive purposes. In the first half, Washington had two key pass breakups - the second prevented a D.C. touchdown, which would have blown the game open.
For the record: The following is the official scoring summary:
D.C. -- Porzel 2 run (Adam Lemmert kick), 8:03 (7-0)
D.C. -- Safety, Jason Ankrah tackled Darian Conners in end zone, 14:03 (9-0)
D.C. -- Porzel 9 run, 10:57 (16-0)
Balt. -- Tavon Austin 84 kick return (Jacob Peery kick), 10:44 (7-16)
Balt. -- Dave Stinebaugh 2 pass from Kevin Fulton (Peery kick), :35 (14-16)
D.C. -- Devon Smith 98 kickoff return (kick failed), 14:41 (22-14)
D.C. -- Porzel 2 run (Lemmert), 2:24 (29-14)
Balt. -- Austin 81 pass from Alex Lemon (Peery kick), 5:30 (21-29)
D.C. -- Marc Magas 26 field goal, 1:03 (32-21)
Sheldon Shealer covers high school sports for ESPNRISE.com. Shealer can be reached at email@example.com.