Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Caleb Young's return a boon for Cambridge Christian

Lancers wide receiver Caleb Young (5) is pushed out of bounds by Golden Eagles safety Alejandro Bryant (19) in the first quarter during the game between Indian Rocks Christian Golden Eagles and Cambridge Christian Lancers at Skyway Park in Tampa, Fla., on Friday, Sept. 9, 2016. Lancers lead 57-40 at the half.

ANDRES LEIVA | Times

Lancers wide receiver Caleb Young (5) is pushed out of bounds by Golden Eagles safety Alejandro Bryant (19) in the first quarter during the game between Indian Rocks Christian Golden Eagles and Cambridge Christian Lancers at Skyway Park in Tampa, Fla., on Friday, Sept. 9, 2016. Lancers lead 57-40 at the half.

TAMPA — In 2015, Cambridge Christian made school history by competing for a state championship for the first time. So when the 2016 campaign began, the Lancers knew exactly on what to set their sights.

The potential to fulfill that goal, however, came crashing down in Week 2, when star two-way player Caleb Young went down with a torn ACL, which sidelined him for the rest of the season.

The Lancers still had a successful 2016 slate, walking away with their second straight undefeated regular season before falling in the second round of the playoffs to Northside Christian.

"It was a great loss last year. Not only did we lose him, but we lost (wide receiver and cornerback) Zach Froelich later in the season. It was a really unusual year," coach Bob Dare said. "I think Caleb was a big difference in how far we went last year compared to the year before."

Young, whose older brother, Garrett, plays at Michigan Tech and owns the majority of the Lancers' passing records, has officially been cleared for contact but will be held out of Friday's spring game against Calvary Christian as a precaution.

Still, the wide receiver and defensive back can't wait to finally take the field again, because while the injury originally set him back, he said that it's resulted in him being an even stronger player.

"I worked harder than I ever have before coming back from it. At the start, it was my goal to play spring football … every day when I was doing therapy, I had that in the back of my mind," said Young, who did this as a sophomore. "It definitely hurt me mentally, but I've come back. I'm stronger, I'm faster than I was before the injury, and I've trained way harder."

As a sophomore in 2015, Young led the Lancers with 378 receiving yards, and he had 52 tackles and five interceptions. Young said the injury has set him back in recruiting because he doesn't have a lot of junior film to show college coaches, but the rising senior intends to make up for lost time at upcoming camps and when the Lancers open their season in August against Winter Garden's Foundation Academy.

Young will be a big part of a Cambridge Christian squad looking to continue its recent dominance this season. Before their state runnerup finish in 2015, the Lancers had never appeared in the playoffs, but they haven't dropped a regular-season game since a loss to Northside Christian on Oct. 3, 2014.

It's a streak that's significant to the Lancers, four-star offensive lineman Richard Gouraige said, but there's another accomplishment they've been eyeing even more.

"It means a lot, but it means we still have to be humble and just go every game, play our best, come to practice, and learn from the coaching," he said. "My first hope is going to the playoffs, and then looking ahead to the championship and winning it all. But we're going to worry about one game at a time."

Caleb Young's return a boon for Cambridge Christian 05/19/17 [Last modified: Thursday, May 18, 2017 5:21pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. College World Series: Gators, LSU face off in all-SEC finals

    College

    OMAHA, Neb. — The matchup for the College World Series finals bolsters the case for those who say the best baseball in the land is played in the SEC.

    Florida’s Brady Singer, delivering during a CWS win over Louisville last week, is scheduled to start tonight against LSU.
  2. Jones: Fox Sports Sun shows depth in Rays coverage

    TV and Radio

    tom jones' two cents

    Tampa Bay Times columnist Tom Jones looks back at the best and worst from a weekend of televised sports.

    Best coverage

    Tampa Bay Rays third baseman Evan Longoria (3) makes a run home for a score in the in the final game of a three-game series between the Tampa Bay Rays and AL East rival the Baltimore Orioles at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Sunday, June 25, 2017.
  3. Brian Boyle says returning to Lightning a 'huge option'

    Blogs

    As former Lightning forward Brian Boyle approaches free agency this week, he said he's trying to stay busy.

    Former Tampa Bay Lightning player center Brian Boyle (24), on the ice during first period action at the Amalie Arena in Tampa on March 16, 2017.
  4. Rays journal: Blake Snell to rejoin rotation, Erasmo Ramirez heads to bullpen

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — LHP Blake Snell is rejoining the Rays' rotation, but the move has as much to do with helping the bullpen as it does with Snell's improvement during his time at Triple-A Durham.

    Tampa Bay Rays relief pitcher Erasmo Ramirez (30) delivers a pitch in the first inning against the Cincinnati Reds Wednesday, June 21, 2017 in St. Petersburg.
  5. Rays' bullpen stars lit up in loss to Orioles

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — Saturday it was the soft underbelly of the bullpen that let one get away from the Rays, incurring the wrath of the team's faithful followers, who wondered why the high-leverage guys weren't pitching.

    Rays closer Alex Colome, coming in with the score tied in the ninth, allows three runs in his second straight poor outing.