BROOKSVILLE — Nature Coast thought it had everything under control in its opener Friday night against Crystal River, but then the Sharks seemed to run out of gas.
Up 14-0 at the half, Nature Coast was defeated 21-14 after a flurry of second half turnovers.
The first quarter featured a 70-yard touchdown run by fullback Dylan Savoury followed by another trip to paydirt from Division I recruit Matt Breida.
But the Sharks were not happy that the score was so close.
The Sharks defense forced a punt to start the second half, but on the following drive Sharks quarterback Ryan Quigley threw an interception that was returned for a touchdown by Crystal River.
Quigley left soon after with undisclosed injuries from the many hits he was taking at the hands of the Pirates defensive line. Replacing Quigley was Trevor Castro, who faced similar pressure from the Crystal River front, led by defensive tackle Manny Henriquez.
Castro fumbled twice and the Sharks could not stop the Crystal River rushing attack as the Pirates drove down the field for two more touchdowns, one through the air and one on the ground, to win the game.
Derek J. LaRiviere, Times correspondent