Around dawn nearly every day this past summer, Wilson High football coach Mark Martin knew where he could find running back Amir Gerald: In the weight room. The Tigers had a standing 6 a.m. lifting session and Gerald, now in his third year as a starter was there. Every day.
“His work ethic is crazy,” Martin said.
Gerald, who is 5 feet 7 and 182 pounds, is in the best shape of his life. And that has been evident the past two weeks – especially after halftime. With the Tigers trailing host Yorktown 7-0 last week, Gerald caught the second-half kickoff and delivered the game-changing play, returning it 90 yards for a touchdown to spark a second-half outburst as Wilson beat Yorktown, 37-29, in a nonleague game.
“Sometimes you’ve just got to pump the team up as much as possible,” Gerald said. “My guys did their part blocking and the rest was history, I took it to the house.”
Having tied the game at 7-7, Gerald was just starting on what would be the best game of his career. He also rushed 30 times for 265 yards and three second-half touchdowns as the Tigers improved to 2-0.
Gerald rushed for more than 1,000 yards last season and is receiving interest from college recruiters.
“He’s been working out like crazy in the offseason,” Martin said. “He can flat out play. Great kid, runs with his pad level low. He’s strong from the waist down and he’s hard to tackle.”
Others receiving Player of the Week consideration were:
Arundel QB Austin Slye rushed 17 times for 128 yards and two touchdowns and completed 21 of 31 passes for 272 yards and three touchdowns as the Wildcats beat Perry Hall, 42-21, in Coach Jack Walsh’s first game.
Middletown QB Reese Poffenbarger completed 14 of 19 passes for 114 yards and three touchdowns in a 55-18 win over Silver Oak.
QB Robby Windsor threw three touchdown passes and rushed for a fourth score as the Hawks beat Hammond, 35-0, in a game that was called in the second quarter because of thunderstorms.
Broad Run QB Mitch Griffis, a Wake Forest recruit, completed 11 of 14 passes for 211 yards as the Spartans beat Tuscarora (Va.), 23-7.
Walter Johnson QB Josh Forburger completed 17 of 26 passes for 227 yards and one touchdowns and rushed for three more scores as the Wildcats beat Poolesville, 43-26.
Wakefield QB Cason Poythress passed for 319 yards and three touchdowns as the Warriors beat Washington-Lee, 32-22.
Oxon Hill senior QB Jy’ir Ingram, a fourth-year varsity player who moved from running back, passed for 200 yards and one touchdown and rushed for 60 yards and two more scores as the Clippers beat Chopticon, 26-14.
Freedom-Woodbridge RB Tyquan Brown rushed 30 times for 222 yards and one touchdown as the Eagles beat Stonewall Jackson, 34-19.
Landon RB-DB Jelani Machen had seven carries for 82 yards and two touchdowns, returned an interception 26 yards for a touchdown, caught an 11-yard pass and made five tackles to help a defensive effort that allowed just 43 yards of total offense in a 42-7 win over Whitman.
North Point QB Asa Williams rushed 18 times for 189 yards and completed 7 of 13 passes for 109 yards as the Eagles rallied to beat Old Mill, 17-15.
St. John’s QB Sol-Jay Maiava completed 9 of 19 passes for 224 and two touchdowns and rushed for 53 yards and another score as the Cadets beat host Hoover (Ala.), 42-14, in a meeting of nationally-ranked teams.
GAMES OF THE WEEK
Virginia: Centreville (2-0) at South County (1-1), Friday 7
Maryland: Damascus (1-0) at Sherwood (1-0), Friday, 6:30
DC: Wilson (2-0) vs. Friendship Collegiate (1-0) at Anacostia, Saturday, 5