SPRING HILL — Last week, Land O'Lakes went from one of the favorites to win Class 6A, District 6 to wondering if a winning season was in the cards after a jarring loss to Hernando. Apparently, all is right with the Gators after a 35-point outburst Friday night at Springstead.
Land O'Lakes coach Brian Wachtel hopes his team's 35-14 victory over the Eagles will right the ship.
The Gators (2-2) were led by an electric first half from tailback Harrison Wood (nine carries, 92 yards, four touchdowns). Each time the junior put his hands on the ball he was in danger of breaking it, averaging 11.6 yards per touch, including a 24-yard reception.
"How about the night he had," Wachtel said. "He was just great in this game. He is some kind of player."
With Gators tight end Kent Taylor (three catches, 69 yards) finally 100 percent coming back from a hand injury that kept him out of the first two games, the premier college recruit scored his first touchdown on a 9-yard reception from Ryan Bird (6-of-9, 153 yards, one touchdown).
With such a large margin, Wood, Taylor and Bird didn't play in the second half as the Gators sat on their lead.
Springstead (1-3) was able to cut into the margin with two scores as Eagles quarterback Tyler Mahla opened up the passing attack by hitting Taylor Minter for six catches for 108 yards. However, Mahla, a sophomore, also had three interceptions, which proved to be the home team's undoing.
"You just can't make those kinds of mistakes," Springstead coach Bill Vonada said. "High school football is a game of momentum, and we gave away too many opportunities in this one."