ST. PETERSBURG — Wherever Gibbs' Maurice Hall ran Friday, he gained yards in a flash. The same could not be said of Boca Ciega's ground game.
Hall rushed for a pair of touchdowns with 120 yards on five attempts, leading the Gladiators to a 23-17 win at home on senior night. The Pirates, meanwhile, gained just 32 yards on 36 attempts.
"He makes plays everywhere," Gibbs coach Rick Kravitz said. "If you need a big play on defense, he makes it, and if you need a big play on offense, he makes it."
After Boca Ciega (1-6, 0-2) evened the score at 7 early in the second quarter on a 59-yard flea-flicker pass, Hall earned his first score on a 65-yard scamper 11 seconds later.
The Gladiators (3-5, 1-2) took a 15-10 lead into the half and less than two minutes into the second, Hall showed off his speed to score from 41 yards out.
Boca Ciega looked to come back late in the third, though, when Sekendric Biddines intercepted a Brevet Killett pass and returned it 55 yards to make it 23-17.
Both defenses dominated down the stretch. Though the Pirates had chances late — including fumble recovery that put the ball at the Gladiators' 30 — Gibbs' front seven that included Undrea Bullard, DaQuan Pittman, Troy Killens and Zack Murray proved to be too much.
"You may be able to go right at us, but you're not going to be able to outrun us," Kravitz said.
Greg Zeck, Times correspondent