HOLIDAY — As Anclote practiced this week under sea-blue skies, one receiver had to change his route because his shorts were falling down.
That’s what passes for a problem for the Sharks this week, after Anclote put itself back in the postseason hunt with a 21-7 upset victory at Zephyrhills.
“I think it was probably one of the biggest wins we’ve had so far in school history,” coach Matt Wicks said.
The Bulldogs — playoff contenders in Class 5A, District 6 — had dominated the team’s three previous meetings, outscoring Anclote by a combined 120-64. Two of Zephyrhills’ four wins from 2009-10 came against the Sharks, and Jamal Roberts ran over Anclote with 272 total yards in his team’s 51-16 rout last fall.
But Friday was different.
A defense led by Shymere Carter and Terrell Martin harassed Zephyrhills’ offense. Instead of watching the Bulldogs’ speedsters run all over the field, the Sharks’ athletes did so, racking up almost 8 yards per play.
“Really it just proves we’re a better team than we think we are,” said RB Kishaun Dampier, the Times’ HomeTeam Hot Shot of the Week after scoring two touchdowns.
That victory put Anclote (2-4) in line for its best season ever. The Sharks could make their first trip to the playoffs if they win out and get some help, including a Fivay loss to Zephyrhills next week.
But the bigger focus is continual improvement at the program, which has progressed from a winless 2009 season to three wins in 2010 and a 4-6 record last fall. Sweeping their final four games — against teams with four combined victories — would lead to the school’s first winning record.
“Now we focus on getting a winning season,” Wicks said.
Matt Baker can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @MattHomeTeam.