PALM HARBOR — It’s not fair to say Richie James is a one-man wrecking crew. After all, the holes that he ran through in a 48-18 win Friday came from somewhere.
But the senior, converted from receiver when Sarasota Riverview needed a quarterback this season, seemingly turned the narrowest channels into super-highways. He sliced up Palm Harbor University so efficiently, and with such speed and maneuverability, that he accounted for 306 yards on a mere 11 first-half touches.
He tacked on a 35-yard sprint to the end zone early in the third quarter as Riverview (4-2, 1-1) built a 33-6 advantage that brought James’ night to an early and satisfying end.
“I’m getting comfortable at quarterback,” James said. “My year started off slow, but we felt we had to win. We haven’t been to the playoffs in six or seven years and we still have a lot of work to do, but our one big goal is the playoffs.”
The host Hurricanes (4-3, 0-2 Class 8A-7) seemingly had an effective game plan, going physical with a pounding running game led by quarterback Tyler Kaminski (26 carries, 131 yards) and fullback Stephen Charron (16 carries, 105 yards).
However, 42 offensive plays in the first half netted Palm Harbor University just six points. With James and second-half star Grant Oshea (11 carries, 173 yards, 2 touchdowns) leading a near-perfect attack, the Rams easily put the game, and the Hurricanes’ playoff hopes, to rest.