Wednesday, November 22, 2017
Sports

Hillsborough: Sunday morning quarterback

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Super 7

1. Armwood (5-1): On a night when so much goes wrong, the Hawks still find a way. That's what good teams do.

2. Plant (4-1): Neither lightning, nor rain, nor a new starting quarterback could keep the Panthers from winning again.

3. Robinson (5-0): This week's opponent, Bye, was the only one not to surrender a defensive touchdown to the Knights.

4. Durant (5-0): Cougars snap a three-game skid against crosstown foe Plant City with a 22-7 victory.

5. Wharton (3-2): A two-hour storm delay and two early turnovers doomed the Wildcats against Plant.

6. Hillsborough (5-0): One more triumph, and the Terriers clinch their 20th consecutive winning season under coach Earl Garcia.

7. Berkeley Prep (6-0): At least one Buccaneers offense in this town is prospering.

In the conversation: Gaither (3-1), Sickles (3-2), Tampa Bay Tech (3-2), Tampa Catholic (5-1)

Unprecedented

If this isn't unprecedented, it has to be pretty close. Newsome's 35-13 win Friday against Brandon represented a 56-point swing in the series in a one-year span. Last season, the Eagles stunned the Wolves 34-0 in Brandon.

Unsung

Guys we should've appreciated more:

DE Eric Bennett, East Bay. While teammate Chris Greene was running roughshod on Riverview's defense (169 yards), this 6-foot-2 junior had a fumble recovery and one of the Indians' three sacks.

ATH Andy Embody, Carrollwood Day. The county's most unappreciated player, according to CDS coach Lane McLaughlin, Embody posted 70 rushing yards, 100-plus receiving yards, five tackles, an interception and a 35-yard punting average against Canterbury.

DB Tony Valdez, Sickles. The Gryphons senior had a fourth-quarter fumble recovery at Armwood and converted a fake punt on fourth and 2 with a 5-yard run. Honorable mention goes to Gryphons FB Jared O'Donoghue. Now we know who creates those running lanes for Ray Ray McCloud.

Audibles

"He's the one person, besides Deuce (Gruden), that is my least favorite guy to go up against in practice." — Andy Embody, Carrollwood Day WR, on LB Max Frankel, whose two tackles for losses against Canterbury included one that knocked the quarterback out of the game

"I've coached under the Thorntons, and with these two schools being so close together, there's always going to be a little bit of hatred between the players." — Frank LaRosa, East Bay coach, after the Indians' 33-14 win against Riverview, coached by his former Indians colleagues Michael and Brian Thornton

"The bottom line is we lost, but we're not out of it. It's the same circumstances as last year, but this is a different ballclub. We have to fix a few things to get back to the playoffs and get back to the second round and face these guys again." — Bob Henriquez, Tampa Catholic coach, after his team's 27-7 loss at Clearwater Central Catholic

By the numbers

1 Tampa Catholic play from scrimmage that went for longer than 10 yards against CCC

2 Consecutive weeks that Jefferson has taken a 21-0 lead on an opponent, and lost

3 Consecutive shutouts posted by Jesuit's defense

13 Consecutive scoreless quarters posted by Jesuit's defense

19 Consecutive regular-season wins for Berkeley Prep, which remains the longest current streak in Hillsborough County

What a rush

Friday was an unusually good night for ball carriers. Here are several of the more prolific ones (all in winning efforts):

Chris Atkins, Durant

27 carries, 133 yards, one TD vs. Plant City

Reggie Brown, Jesuit

Nine carries, 164 yards, three TDs vs. Lennard

Chris Greene, East Bay

Nine carries, 169 yards, two TDs vs. Riverview

Jamarlon Hamilton, Durant

19 carries, 127 yards, one TD vs. Plant City

DeAndre James, Blake

20 carries, 156 yards, two TDs vs. Middleton

Xavier Johnson, Chamberlain

17 carries, 160 yards, one TD vs. Freedom

Chris Williams, Berkeley Prep

19 carries, 196 yards, three TDs vs. St. Petersburg Catholic

Will Worth, Newsome

23 carries, 173 yards, two TDs vs. Brandon

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