TAMPA — Jumping out to a 35-0 lead, Plant cruised past Freedom 42-12 to clinch its 11th straight district championship and a home playoff game in the first round.
Panthers' quarterback Dane Frantzen threw for three touchdowns and 99 yards on 8-of-10 attempts. He was also the team's leading rusher with 109 yards on 10 carries and added a rushing touchdown. The Panthers (7-2, 5-0) finished with 335 total yards of offense.
Plant's defense was just as impressive, holding the Patriots (3-5, 3-2) to minus-17 yards on 19 carries via the ground and 114 total yards for the game.
Play of the game: Already in control, Frantzen all but secured the win with his third and final touchdown pass, perhaps his most impressive play in a great game. With the pocket collapsing around him, Frantzen stepped up, took a hit and delivered a beautiful pass 45 yards into the hands of Scoop Bradshaw in the end zone, putting an exclamation mark on a excellent night.
Players of the game: While Frantzen is an obvious choice, much of his success came from the five men blocking for him up front. Plant starting offensive linemen Felipe Fernandez, Julius Jackson, Qarch Hawk, Bryce Jenkins and Cameron Calderon were instrumental in pacing Plant's dominating offensive performance.
Stat of the game: Despite the lopsided margin, Plant only ran three more plays than Freedom, 53 total plays to 50. Four of Plant's six touchdown drives were on four plays or fewer.
Final word: "Each (district championship) is special. I can remember the first one back in 2005. That 2005 team really believed in what went on and came back and won a district championship. Now to come back 11 years later and to have won 11 straight, that really says a lot for the kids who have come through our program all of those years. I always say we stand on the shoulders of giants, and you think tonight when you have 11 straight, you have a lot of giants up there." — Plant coach Robert Weiner