If Troy Hambrick is this good as a just-turned 15-year-old sophomore, imagine what the future holds for the Pasco High running back.
Hambrick scored three touchdowns and rushed for 126 yards on 16 carries to lead the second-ranked Pirates to a 44-19 victory over South Sumter Friday in a battle of unbeaten Class 3A teams.
Hambrick did it all, scoring on a 1-yard run, on an 18-yard yard pass from Issac Johnson and on a 33-yard fumble return at defensive back.
"For a sophomore, this feels pretty good," Hambrick said. "But I have to give credit to the defense. The defense held them and let the offense do its thing. If we keep playing this I don't think anyone can stop us."
Pasco coach Perry Brown also praised the defense.
"The defense came out and played with great intensity," Brown said. "They provided us with a cushion and it was hard for a real tough South Sumter team to get back in the game."
As for Hambrick: "Troy is just a young kid _ he just turned 15 last week. He's getting some great experience."
Pasco's scoring also included a 13-yard touchdown pass from Johnson to Tim Jones, a 40-yard punt-block return by Page Sessoms, a 56-yard touchdown run by Chris Roberts and a 31-yard field goal and five extra points by Brent Lockliear.
Pasco had leads of 21-0, 28-6 and 41-12 in a game the Pirates dominated. South Sumter's Ladovick Gibson scored on 68-yard fumble return and a 43-yard pass from Clint Hart against the Pirates' second-team defense. Neither score hardly made a dent in the Pasco lead.
"This team is progressing very well," said Brown, whose team went 10-0 in the regular season last year en route to a 3A-7 title. "As long as our defense keeps playing with intensity, we'll be okay."