Sunday, November 18, 2018
Hometeam

Football: Northeast 26, Gibbs 20

ST. PETERSBURG — With about a half minute to go in the game, and his team trailing by six, Deonnte Brooks walked slowly from the Northeast sideline to his position behind the Gibbs offense. He had just run for 9 yards to the Vikings’ 18-yard line, but that was just a fraction of what he meant to Gibbs throughout the game.

When he took the ball from center on the fourth-down play, Brooks’ energy appeared to return. But he had nowhere to go with it as Luke Compton rushed up the middle for the sack that would secure Northeast’s first win of the season.

Northeast took a 14-point lead with two quick scores in the fourth quarter. The first of those came on Tyler Vanburger’s 5-yard run with 9:39 left in the game. About a minute later, after Northeast recovered an onside kick, Vanburger scored from 30 yards out.

Gibbs answered with Brooks’ 23-yard TD run and his two-point rushing conversion to close the gap to 26-20 with just over seven minutes remaining. Brooks was the most valuable player for Gibbs on this night, as he accounted for 232 yards of the team’s 238 yards of offense. He rushed for 146 yards and two touchdowns, and completed 8 of 14 passes for 86.

His counterpart, Craig Richardson Jr., completed 4 of 5 passes for 76 yards, including a 50-yard TD pass to Xavier McDonald that put the Vikings ahead at halftime. He also had the team’s first points of the game, a 2-yard TD run on a drive that started at the Gladiators 25 after a blocked punt by Northeast.

Vikings coach Jeremy Frioud noted that his team has only had two full practices since the season started, but said he wasn’t worried about their conditioning even as they ran the ball again and again, and succeeded on one of two onside kick attempts in the fourth quarter to keep the ball with his offense.

"These kids I wouldn’t trade for the world," Frioud said.

Frioud also emphasized his admiration for the Gladiators and their refusal to give up.

"My respect goes out to the Gibbs coaching staff," he said.

For Vanburger, who rushed for 103 yards and two TDs on 19 carries, the team’s potent offensive performance had been waiting to happen.

"Once we got our engine rolling, we were good," said Vanburger. "It just takes wear and tear out of the other team."

The game also saw Northeast honor freshman Ruben Marcano, who played one game for the Vikings and recently passed away. At halftime, the press box announced Marcano as "a big boy, with an even bigger heart" as the team’s coaches met Ruben’s mother at midfield to present her with her son’s game-worn jersey, which they had signed.

Most of the Northeast coaches, and many of those in attendance, wore commemorative shirts honoring Ruben. Those shirts were sold during the game, and it was announced that all of the proceeds from their sale would go to the Marcano family.

     
     
Comments
Jesuit pulls off a rare Tampa Bay repeat in state swimming

Jesuit pulls off a rare Tampa Bay repeat in state swimming

STUART — Jesuit boys swim coach Bill Shaffer spent all week trying to score the Class 2A meet. Based off his numbers, the Tigers were not going to have enough to defend their state team title.But in the preliminaries, things changed. Jesuit swi...
Published: 11/17/18
Bishop McLaughlin’s first volleyball loss of season comes in Class 3A final

Bishop McLaughlin’s first volleyball loss of season comes in Class 3A final

FORT MYERS — Bishop McLaughlin wasn't pulling any punches after its 25-16, 25-16, 25-22 loss to Doral Divine Savior Academy on Saturday afternoon in the Class 3A state final.As the Hurricanes (30-1) stood on the Suncoast Credit Union Arena floo...
Published: 11/17/18
Shorecrest claims first state volleyball title

Shorecrest claims first state volleyball title

FORT MYERS — Almost as soon as the ball slammed to the court, Jacqueline St. Cin started crying. Her thunderous kill, one of 16 on the day, finished off a 25-23, 25-18, 25-22 Class 4A state final win over Palm Beach Gardens Benjamin on Saturday...
Published: 11/17/18
Football playoffs: Jefferson 34, Lakewood 23

Football playoffs: Jefferson 34, Lakewood 23

ST. PETERSBURG — Jefferson continues to prove that seedings don't matter in Class 5A. A week after upsetting top seed Hardee, the No. 8Dragons took down No. 4 seed Lakewood 34-23 in the region semifinals.Niko Duffey scored two first-half rushin...
Published: 11/17/18
Football playoffs: Bloomingdale 21, Palmetto 14

Football playoffs: Bloomingdale 21, Palmetto 14

VALRICO — In the offseason, Bloomingdale coach Max Warner told his players the goal was to play on Thanksgiving weekend.That left a lot of perplexed looks from the Bulls."They didn't know what that meant," Warner said.Bloomingdale had neve...
Published: 11/17/18
Football playoffs: Plant 39, Viera 18

Football playoffs: Plant 39, Viera 18

VIERA — Once again, the Plant Panthers proved they're the kind of team that can take a little momentum … and run you over with it.That was the case in Friday night's Class 7A, Region 2 semifinal as the Panthers rallied from an 18-10 halft...
Published: 11/17/18
Football playoffs: Seffner Christian 27, Carrollwood Day 16

Football playoffs: Seffner Christian 27, Carrollwood Day 16

DOVER – Isaiah Knowles connected with Christian Helms on a pair on 10-yard touchdown tosses as Seffner Christian defeated Carrollwood Day 27-16 on Friday, giving the Crusaders their first playoff win in school history. The win, a rematch o...
Published: 11/17/18

Football playoffs: Nature Coast 17, Baker County 16

BROOKSVILLE — Nature Coast, an easy winner most of its past 10 games, really never had the need to attempt a field goal this season. Nor did the Sharks need to throw much, despite quarterback Fabian "2 Fabe" Burnett possessing a talented arm.Bu...
Published: 11/16/18
Updated: 11/17/18

Football playoffs: Admiral Farragut 40, Cambridge Christian 14

ST. PETERSBURG — Admiral Farragut's Courtney Eubanks came out for his first home playoff game ready to play.Early in the first quarter, Eubanks had an interception on defense and followed that play with a touchdown on offense as the Blue Jacket...
Published: 11/16/18

Football playoffs: Citra North Marion 40, Zephyrhills 21

ZEPHYRHILLS — Zephyrhills' perfect season is imperfect now that it is over. A 40-21 loss to Citra North Marion in Friday night's Class 5A region semifinal ended the Bulldogs' season at 11-1. They were ousted in the second round for a second str...
Published: 11/16/18