BY CHRIS MCMANES — It was billed as the battle for Maryland high school football supremacy. DeMatha entered the game on top of the Free State rankings. It came out the same way.

The Stags improved to 4-0 on Sept. 16 with a 49-28 rout at McDonogh in Owings Mills. They begin Washington Catholic Athletic Conference play tonight at St. Mary’s Ryken (0-4) in Leonardtown.

Quarterback Beau English and tailback Khory Spruill paced DeMatha in its victory over the Eagles (3-1). McDonogh came into the contest ranked No. 3 in the state.

English finished 14 of 14 passing for 212 yards. He accounted for four touchdowns (two passing, two running). Spruill rushed for 136 yards and scored three TDs. The Stags, who trailed 14-7 early, scored 35 straight points to wrest control.

“We just executed our coaches’ game plan to perfection tonight,” English said. “Our coaches did a great job getting us ready for this game. … I think it was one of our best nights offensively.”

English, who is used to long drives to and from school each day and after football games, had to go only about five minutes to get home Friday. The senior Pikesville resident had a lot of family at the game, many of whom don’t get much of a chance to see him play.

“It’s great,” he said. “I get to go right home.”

Expect DeMatha to look right at home tonight in Southern Maryland. The Stags are top-ranked by The Washington Post. USA Today ranks DeMatha fourth nationally.

Chris McManes covers DeMatha athletics for the Hyattsville Life & Times.