Senior running back leads Mariner past Cascade | FootballBrown scores 6 TDs in Mariner’s 49-34 win
Mariner senior running back Darius Brown admits he’s played in games before where he’s scored six touchdowns.
But it’s one thing to do that in Little League games and quite another in a high school football game.
Brown rushed for 236 yards and five touchdowns and caught a pass for another score to help lead the Marauders to a 49-34 victory over Cascade in a Wesco 4A game Friday night at Goddard Stadium.
Mariner (2-1 in the league, 3-2 overall) won its third out of the last four games and second league contest.
“Everybody feels pretty good,” Brown said.
The Marauders’ defense came into Friday’s game missing about five starters due to a variety of injuries. That meant the pressure was on Brown, junior running back Romelo Mangum, senior quarterback JJ Walker and the Mariner offense.
The Marauders’ backfield responded. Mangum rushed for 133 yards on 10 carries and Walker completed 5 of 10 passes for 45 yards and 1 TD.
“Romelo and I had to step up,” Brown said.
“He (Brown) is a tough runner. We kept feeding him the ball,” Mariner coach Mark Stewart said. “Romelo is a good running back. … That’s a good one-two punch. JJ had some key first down runs.”
Cascade (0-3, 1-4) went into halftime with a 28-21 lead. During the break, the Marauders made some adjustments on the defensive line and the changes helped them shut down the Bruins.
“We got our guys focused on what they had to do to be successful,” Stewart said.
Brown scored on a 67-yard touchdown run to tie the score at 28 early in the third quarter. Walker then threw a 14-yard TD pass to Brown to give the Marauders a 35-28 advantage.
Cascade cut the deficit to 35-34 with a TD early in the fourth quarter. The 2-point conversion attempted failed.
In the fourth quarter, Brown scored on touchdown runs of 35 and 49 yards. Cascade had trouble dealing with Brown’s speed.
“On the outside, I knew they were slow,” Brown said.
Stewart likes the progress he’s seen from the Mariner offensive line.
“We’re real young with one returning starter,” he said. “It’s been a group led by Drew Johnson and some other guys. They’ve been really stepping up and just getting better. We’re real pleased with how they blocked.”
Brown scored his first touchdown on a 21-yard run in the first quarter. After Cascade took a 14-7 lead on a pair of TD runs, Brown tied the score at 14 on a 6-yard run.
Mangum scored on 73-yard run to give the Marauders a 21-14 lead in the second quarter before the Bruins closed out the second quarter with a pair of touchdown runs.
“Defensively, we figured it out,” Stewart said of the second half.
Mariner faces its toughest test of the season to date on Friday. The Marauders travel to Monroe for a 7 p.m. game against a team that dismantled Glacier Peak 64-6.
“They’re real physical and really explosive,” Stewart said. “They have great athletes. We’re going to have to play our best game and show what improvements we’ve made.”
The Mariner defense should be at full strength or close to it for Friday’s match-up.
“We have lots of people coming back for the defense,” Brown said. “They’re going to make a big difference.”