Crystal River turned two fourth-quarter interceptions by safety Anthony Porter into touchdowns Friday night for a 27-7 upset of Class 3A, District 4 contender Tampa Jesuit. The Pirates (4-3 in 3A-4 and 4-4 overall) overcame an inconsistent night on offense with a stingy defense that created five turnovers and allowed only one score.
Jesuit (5-2, 6-2) had two touchdowns called back by holding penalties on its second possession, which ultimately ended in a missed 31-yard field goal attempt.
Crystal River went three-and-out on its first three possessions, but came to life when Stacey Daigneau intercepted a Troy Kent pass at the Pirates 25-yard-line. Daigneau appeared to have returned it 75 yards for a touchdown, but the play was brought back by a clipping call at the Jesuit 18.
Three plays later, fullback Wes Jenkins carried it in from the 8 to break a scoreless tie with 3:50 left in the second quarter. Steve Pierson's extra point gave the Pirates a 7-0 lead.
Kent, who was hit after releasing the intercepted pass, was taken away in an ambulance, but returned to the sidelines in the third quarter.
Jesuit got on the board in the third period, taking advantage of a Crystal River fumble. Steve DeBoskey ran it in from the 3 and Chris Clamp's point-after tied the game at 7-7.
Crystal River quarterback Keith Davis found Marty House for a 25-yard touchdown pass on the first play of the fourth quarter, but Pierson's point-after failed, leaving Crystal River with a 13-7 lead with 11:54 to play.