Player of the Week: Damascus’ Dillon Dunathan

It might be difficult to believe, but there was some concern whether standout running back and linebacker Dillon Dunathan was fully ready for the Swarmin’ Hornets’ season opener.

Dunathan had mononucleosis at the end of May, preventing him from attending college camps over the summer to perform for college coaches in hopes of attracting recruiting attention. He was not cleared for physical contact until the day before Damascus’ first preseason scrimmage.

However, any doubts about Dunathan’s condition were quickly eased this past Friday. The 6-foot, 225-pound senior was a force on both sides of the ball, making seven tackles, three for losses, on defense and rushing 17 times for 177 yards and two touchdowns on offense as Damascus scored a big 33-28 victory over Northwest.

“We were worried about how physical he would be, but he didn’t miss a beat,” Damascus Coach Josh Klotz said, noting that Dunathan has a handful of FCS scholarship offers but expects that some bigger schools might join the list once Dunathan has some senior film to show recruiters.



For his efforts, Dunathan was named the Military Bowl DC Touchdown Club High School Football Player of the Week. The Player of the Week is honored each Wednesday throughout the season on WTOP.

Damascus running back and linebacker Dillon Dunathan earned Player of the Week by leading the Swarmin’ Hornets to a 33-28 win over Northwest in a battle of Montgomery County heavyweights. (Denis Dunathan/Courtesy Damascus football)

A four-year varsity player, expectations have always been high for Dunathan. When asked which side of the ball his star player is better on, Klotz pondered for a moment.

“That’s a good question. In high school, probably offense, because you don’t get too many running backs his size who can run. Watch the tape: on that game-winning [50-yard] touchdown, he runs away from Northwest, which is a fast team,” Klotz said. “But for college, most people are looking at him as a linebacker because he has that prototypical size at inside linebacker.”

Dunathan’s versatility is evident – on and off the field. He has been a member of the Damascus wrestling, basketball and lacrosse teams. And on the football team, he also returns kicks, is the backup holder and had been the team’s placekicker last season until it was decided that Dunathan needed a bit more rest, as he would never take himself out of the game.

“We realized we couldn’t expect him to run 60 yards for a touchdown and then kick the PAT,” Klotz said.

This week’s DC Touchdown Club Player of the Week High School Football Player of the Week Honor Roll:

ANNE ARUNDEL

Annapolis WR-DB Ian Brown caught a touchdown pass, returned a kickoff for a touchdown and intercepted a pass as the Panthers beat High Point, 20-6.

DC

Bell QB Demiko Suggs completed 8 of 9 passes for 174 yards and three touchdowns and rushed five times for 38 yards and two touchdowns as the Griffins beat Eastern, 51-0.

FREDERICK

Urbana QB Keegan Johnson, a Ball State baseball recruit, completed 6 of 11 passes for 138 yards and two touchdowns, had a 40-yard touchdown run and made a 35-yard field goal and all five of his point-after kicks as the Hawks beat Richard Montgomery, 38-0.

HOWARD

Howard QB Tyler Sabatini completed 9 of 10 passes for 137 yards and three touchdowns and also rushed for a touchdown as the Lions beat Marriotts Ridge, 35-27.

LOUDOUN

Independence TE-LB Julien Randolph, a North Carolina recruit, caught four passes for 185 yards and two touchdowns and on defense made seven tackles with two sacks and broke up two passes as the Tigers beat Riverside, 28-18.

NORTHERN REGION

Lake Braddock QB Daniel Lipovski, a Delaware recruit, competed 14 of 21 passes for 307 yards and four touchdowns as the Bruins beat Madison, 34-31.

PRINCE GEORGE’S

Wise DT Tre Hull made nine tackles with seven tackles for loss and one sack as the Pumas beat North Point, 20-18.

PRINCE WILLIAM

Gainesville RB Koven Smith rushed 15 times for 191 yards and two touchdowns, returned a kickoff 60 yards for a touchdown and caught a touchdown pass as the Cardinals earned their first victory in school history, 54-28 over Osbourn Park.

PRIVATE

St. Mary’s-Annapolis RB Patrick Cary rushed 18 times for 127 yards and four touchdowns as the Saints beat Bullis, 32-6.

SOUTHERN MARYLAND

Leonardtown RB-LB Zach Meade rushed for 134 yards and two touchdowns and on defense made seven tackles and intercepted a pass as the Raiders beat McDonough, 40-0.

WCAC

St. John’s QB Myles Slade completed 5 of 5 passes for 100 yards and one touchdown and rushed five times for 100 yards and two touchdowns as the Cadets beat Middletown (Del.), 42-0.

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