Detroit — Cameron Terrill played his first football game in three years Thursday and Birmingham Brother Rice is thankful the linebacker came out for his senior year.
Terrill and Brother Rice’s defense came through with eight sacks and limited Utica Eisenhower to 78 total yards in a 7-0 victory in the Xenith Prep Kickoff Classic at Wayne State University’s Adams Field.
“It’s just the grittiest defense in the Catholic League, we’re coming for everyone,” Terrill said. “I’m pumped. Our defense is stellar. No points allowed, just a few first downs allowed. We have a great defense and I love every single one of my boys on the defense.”
So, how was Brother Rice able to penetrate the line and get to Eisenhower quarterback Blake Rastigue?
“Just great coaching,” Terrill said. “Everything goes to Coach K (head coach Adam Korzeniewski) and our defensive coaches. They are great guys. Preparation was everything. This was a dogfight, definitely a dogfight, these are the games you live for. This is my first time playing football in three years and this is what I’ve come back to the game for.”
Terrill had a hand in five tackles for lost yardage, including four sacks. It left junior linebacker Ohannes Sarkisian impressed.
“Our defense was firing on all cylinders tonight,” said Sarkisian, who talked about Terrill’s first varsity game. “Ever since he’s come out he’s been so aggressive and he’s been loving it, just hitting the gaps hard. He’s a great player.”
And Sarkisian showed he is also a great player, lending a hand in three sacks, including teaming up with Terrill for two sacks in the second half.
Brother Rice senior quarterback Greg Piscopink played well, completing 15 of 22 passes for 141 yards. He scored on a 7-yard run with 5:18 left in the second quarter for the lone score of the game.
Brother Rice’s defense pinned Eisenhower back after getting a sack, along with penalties on Eisenhower to allow Rice a short field to work with, to start the scoring drive at the 26-yard line.
Brother Rice had multiple short fields to work with, only to have drives stall each time.
Eisenhower, which started its final drive with 55 total yards, made things interesting when Rastigue led his team from its own 20 with 2:26 left by finding Aiden Ives for passes of 27 and five yards to reach the Brother Rice 42. Rastigue then scrambled for seven yards to the 35 before Terrill and Sarkisian got a sack to push Eisenhower back to the 43, followed by another sack by Mason Everly to the 49.
Still, Eisenhower had another chance when pass interference was called on Rastigue’s fourth-down pass. But Rastigue’s pass on fourth-and-4 fell incomplete to end the threat.
Eisenhower had a short field to work with early in the third quarter when linebacker Aleks Gjelaj stripped the ball from a Brother Rice receiver after a short gain and Gene Huskey recovered at the Brother Rice 31.
But Brother Rice’s defense made sure Eisenhower wouldn’t take advantage of the turnover when Terrill and Sarkisian sacked Rastigue on a third-and-10 from the 17 and Ryan Browne then broke up a fourth-down pass in the end zone.