ST. PETERSBURG — Led by a pair of key turnovers late in the second half, Jesuit knocked off Gibbs 21-13 Friday night.
With their offense struggling, the Tigers (6-3) turned to two seniors in the secondary to pull away. With 11:50 left in the fourth, James Peek returned an interception 9 yards to give Jesuit a 14-6 lead. Soon after, Gibbs (2-6) was pinned deep again and fumbled the ball back to its end zone, where Bryant Camareno recovered for the Tigers and a 21-6 lead.
"The offense was moving a little slow," Jesuit coach James Harrell said, "I told our defense we had to step up. We weren't going to be denied."
The Gladiators opened the scoring in the first quarter on a 62-yard pass off a double reverse from Emmanuel Stewart to Marquis Allen. Jesuit took a 7-6 halftime lead on Ryan Black's 1-yard run.
The Tigers' defensive dominance began just before halftime as they recovered a fumble inside their 10.
Christian Sandler, Times correspondent