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Quince Orchard High School wide receiver Elliott Davis stood in the end zone, nodding his head while waiting for everyone else to catch up.

He’d just caught a 72-yard touchdown pass — flashing the speed that has earned him scholarship offers from Wake Forest, Maryland, Clemson, Toledo, Old Dominion and Buffalo — and surged so far ahead, he had a brief moment to himself.

Soon, his teammates surrounded him, and as he jumped with them, he held the ball tight and watched for a referee to get downfield. When Davis saw one, he flipped him the ball.

Davis, who was suspended two weeks ago for his excessive celebrations, said he’s learned his lesson. He backed it up in No. 2 Quince Orchard’s 41-6 win over No. 4 Gaithersburg on Friday in Rockville, a matchup of Montgomery County’s last undefeated teams.

“Tonight showed how good they can be,” Quince Orchard coach Dave Mencarini said. “Let me tell you something. That’s a really good Gaithersburg team, too. I don’t care what the score says. That’s a really good Gaithersburg team. And I hope we don’t have to play them again. That’s for sure.”

Mencarini might not get his wish.

Quince Orchard (8-0, 97 playoff points) remains the No. 1 seed in the 4A West Region, and Gaithersburg (7-1, 80 playoff points) holds a significant lead over Northwest (6-2, 67 playoff points) for the No. 2 seed — making Quince Orchard-Gaithersburg the likeliest region-final matchup.

For Gaithersburg to get that far, it might have to advance without running back Solomon Vault, a Northwestern recruit who missed his fourth game with a leg injury.

“He practiced every day this week. He looked fantastic in practice, had no pain, no swelling, no nothing,” Gaithersburg coach Kreg Kephart said. “I’m planning on him playing tonight. He goes to the doctor last night, and the doctor says he wants to do another MRI and doesn’t want him to play until he gets another MRI. So, I don’t know. I’m planning on not having him the rest of the year.”

Quince Orchard got its offensive punch from a variety of sources, though Davis’ longest catch of the season stood out and first touchdown since his suspension. As did his subdued celebration.

“I’m going to score touchdowns, so it’s something I’ve got to get used to,” Davis said. “I’ve got to do the right thing after I score.”

Kevin Joppy, Malcolm Brown, Shawn Barlow and Kyle Green also scored touchdowns. Troy Porter kicked a field goal and four extra points and, on a snap mishap, threw a two-point conversion through the hands of Adam McLean and into Kyle Mannion’s.

Though McLean missed his chance to register offensively, he had 2.5 sacks from his defensive line position. Kephart said McLean — whose scholarship offers include Florida State, Virginia Tech, Nebraska, Mississippi, North Carolina State, Boston College, Michigan State, Iowa and Maryland — looked better Friday than in video of any previous game.

Davis led Quince Orchard with two catches for 99 yards, nearly scoring on his other reception but falling at the 1-yard line.

“He’s a dynamic player,” Mencarini said. “He’s a dynamic personality.

“No one is bigger than the program. We’ve worked hard for 10 years to build this thing to where it is. The name of the program is important. ... I also have to recognize the fact that I can’t make him into something that he’s not. So, it’s a growing process.”

Davis respects that process, too.

“I’m glad I missed that game, because it humbled, and it was a step I needed to take,” said Davis, who watched the Oct. 12 Bethesda-Chevy Chase game from the bleachers. “Now I’m back with my team to stay.”

Quince Orchard has won at least eight straight over Gaithersburg and is 25-0 against 4A West competition since moving into the region two years ago, winning by an average score of 43-5.

To celebrate their latest win, Quince Orchard’s players repeated how they’ve celebrated their previous seven: Davis leading in the middle of the scrum leading the post-game cheer. Even after the team beat Bethesda-Chevy Chase, Davis came down to the field to lead the cheer “because my team still loves me, and I still love my team. And they understand I made a mistake, but they understand that I love this team.”

Friday, Davis’ passion, the passion he restrained following his touchdown, showed.

“We’re 8-0!” Davis yelled, his teammates repeating each line.

“We’re 8-0!”

“We’re on a roll!”

“We’re on a roll!”

“We stand tall!”

“We stand tall!”

“We can’t fall!”

“We can’t fall!”

“It’s our year!”

“It’s our year!”

“I love it!”

“I love it!”

dfeldman@gazette.net

No. 2 Quince Orchard 41, No. 4 Gaithersburg 6

Quince Orchard (8-0) 3 21 15 2 — 41

Gaithersburg (7-1) 0 0 6 0 — 6

First quarter

QO — Troy Porter kick 21 field goal, 3:28. 3-0.

Second quarter

QO — Kevin Joppy 1 run (Troy Porter kick), 9:50. 10-0.

QO — Malcolm Brown 6 pass from Mike Murtaugh (Troy Porter kick), 4:10. 17-0.

QO — Elliott Davis 72 pass from Mike Murtaugh (Troy Porter kick), 2:15. 24-0.

Third quarter

QO — Shawn Barlow 11 run (Kyle Manion from Troy Porter), 8:29. 32-6

G — Max Anderson 41 fumble return (pass failed), 6:51. 6-32

QO — Kyle Green 32 run (Troy Porter kick), 4:56. 39-6.

Fourth quarter

QO — Holding in the end zone for safety, 7:40. 41-6

RUSHING

Quince Orchard — Kyle Green 16-156, Kevin Joppy 16-70, Shawn Barlow 13-85, Mike Murtaugh 2-7, Preston Bampoe-Addo 1-7.

Gaithersburg — Nick DeCarlo 10-14, Xaviyer Mosley 5-11, Zavae Johnson 2-2, Luis Vigil 1-(-4).

PASSING

Quince Orchard — Mike Murtaugh 7-9-141-0.

Gaithersburg — Nick DeCarlo 7-21-70-1.

RECEIVING

Quince Orchard — Elliott Davis 2-99, Malcolm Brown 2-16, Preston Bampoe-Addo 2-16, Shawn Barlow 1-10.

Gaithersburg — Dalton Kephart 2-25, Ariel Martinez 2-18, William Tearney 2-14, Isaiah Rainey 1-13.