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Football: Weeki Wachee 33, Central 14

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Sat. September 1, 2012 | Bryan Burns

BROOKSVILLE — The first offensive play in Weeki Wachee varsity history was a fumbled quarterback-center exchange recovered by Central.

So, too, was its second offensive play.

What didn’t slip out of the Hornets’ grasp, however, was the program’s first victory.

After falling behind early 7-0, Weeki Wachee scored 33 unanswered points and cruised to a 33-14 win.

Junior Andrew Vreeland scored the first points for Weeki Wachee, taking a handoff from David Tinch and twisting and turning up the middle 36 yards to the end zone.

“It was definitely an amazing feeling,” Vreeland said. “I broke a few tackles. It was a big run. I was excited.”

Vreeland’s score, which came with 7:10 remaining in the first half, sparked a Weeki Wachee offense that sputtered through the first quarter and a half. Three of the Hornets’ first four drives ended with a fumble. On the fifth, Vreeland picked up 52 yards on two carries to get the Hornets rolling.

On Weeki Wachee’s next drive, Tinch hit Marcus Allen on a 17-yard post pattern on fourth down to give it a 14-7 lead. Allen took a hit as he made the reception, held onto the ball and rolled into the end zone.

“I didn’t think we would turn the ball over five times,” said Tinch, who finished 9-of-17 for 174 yards and two touchdowns and also rushed for a touchdown.

“But once we got going, it felt good.”

Weeki Wachee broke the game open in the second half. On its third play, Tinch hit Allen for a 64-yard touchdown. Allen got behind the defense, and Tinch lofted a pass that hit him in stride for a 20-6 advantage.

On the Hornets’ next drive, Tinch scored on a keeper on fourth and 1 from the Central 3.

Mitchell Gee capped the scoring for Weeki Wachee when he blocked a punt and recovered it in the end zone to make it 33-7.

“This win feels great,” Tinch said.

“We’ve got a lot of momentum going into the next game. This will help us get going for the season.”

The Bears opened the scoring when Cody Brooks found James Reynolds over the middle for a 23-yard pass to the Hornets 2. Brooks fumbled, the ball rolling into the end zone, and Preston Merritt recovered it for an early 7-0 lead.

Cole Teater, who entered at quarterback for the Bears in the third quarter, hit Jamarcus Hayes on an 11-yard fade pattern in the end zone with 11:54 remaining in the game to pull the Bears within 19 points.

The offensive inefficiency that plagued Central in 2011 carried over to the new season. The Bears turned the ball over seven times and were penalized 18 times for 192 yards.

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