EAST LAKE — It was the Pete DiNovo and Artavis Scott show Friday as East Lake built a 27-0 halftime lead on its way to a 27-7 victory over Charlotte in the preseason classic.
DiNovo, the Central Florida-bound senior, showed off his arm by completing 11 of 18 passes for 211 yards, two touchdowns and one interception. Scott was DiNovo's favorite target, with five receptions for 137 yards and both touchdown catches. Scott also had two long punt returns, of 63 and 54 yards, for touchdowns. Junior Weston Fordham provided much of the Eagles' ground game, rushing seven times for 29 yards.
The East Lake defense did its part as well, pressuring Charlotte into numerous mistakes. The Eagles set the tone in the first quarter, holding the Fighting Tarpons to no points on four tries from the Eagles' 2-yard line. They also had numerous knockdowns, a forced fumble and two interceptions, both by senior defensive back Elijah Thomas.
Charlotte's offense was led by senior running back Clyde Newton, who had 22 carries for 96 yards and the Tarpons' only touchdown. He also caught a 35-yard pass from junior quarterback Brennan McGill.
Lauren Burg, Times correspondent