SportsLocal SportsTurkey Bowl


Loyola aims for back-to-back Turkey Bowl wins

Dons enter Thanksgiving game against rival Calvert Hall as defending Turkey Bowl champs for first time since 2014
Loyola Blakefield football
Posted at 2:20 PM, Nov 22, 2022
and last updated 2022-11-22 17:43:36-05

TOWSON, Md. — As winners of last year’s Turkey Bowl, the Loyola Blakefield high school football team is proud caretakers of the Alumni Memorial Trophy. They don’t want to let it go.

"You just want to protect what’s yours. We got it and it’s our job to protect it," said senior linebacker Andrew Duvall.

On Thursday the Dons go for consecutive Turkey Bowl victories for the first time in 14 years as they battle rival Calvert Hall in the 102nd edition of the Thanksgiving game. Loyola won last year’s game in stunning fashion, rallying to upset the then MIAA champion Cardinals 41-35. It was their first Turkey Bowl win since 2013. Marcus Hines tossed the game-winning touchdown with nine seconds to go.

"I relive it almost every day," he said. "Sometimes whenever I’m feeling down or I need motivation I just go back and literally watch the whole game again. I felt like Tom Brady, to put it in perspective."

Hines is expected to split quarterback reps in Thursday’s game with sophomore Brad Seiss.

"I’m excited. I’m a little nervous. First Turkey Bowl ever, so I’m excited. It’s a big game for the whole community," said Seiss.

Anthony Zehyoue is coming off his first Turkey Bowl win in four tries as head coach. He said winning last year’s game absolutely helps in this year’s contest.

"Because there are a number of guys who will play in the game Thursday who played in that game last year. So, anytime there is adversity in the game you know you have a lot of players who have experienced victory and know what it takes and know what it means to be successful in that game."

"You’ve done it once, you can do it again," said Duvall. "It’s everything to have that belief in your squad and just be ready to go."

One difference this year is the layoff. Last year Loyola, like Calvert Hall, came into the game on five days rest. The Dons competed in the MIAA 'B' conference title game. This year, they played an 'A' conference schedule. Their last game was on November 4.

Loyola enters Thursday with a 4-5 record, but they are playing their best ball when it matters. They have won three of their last four games.

They know the task is tough against Calvert Hall. The Cardinals are 6-6 and are coming off a loss to Spalding in last Friday’s MIAA title game.

"It’s going to be a battle, especially after losing to us last year. I know how bitter the rivalry is and how bad those guys want to beat us," said Zehyoue. " Our kids are fully prepared to expect a ferocious effort from the Cardinals."

And we’re prepared to expect another great game.

Follow Shawn Stepner on Twitter @StepnerWMAR and Facebook