ST. PETERSBURG — Behind dominant play from its offensive and defensive lines, Dixie Hollins won its Homecoming game against Pasco, 20-0. The game was notable for being the first time Rebels coach Dale Caparaso had faced the team he last coached in 2006.
“I told our guys in the spring our ultimate goal is ‘Dixie matters,’” said Caparaso. “I think we just took some huge steps so far in this early season toward that.”
The Rebels (3-1) allowed Pasco to cross midfield just once, and that was the on the Pirates’ first drive of the game, when they started at their own 45. And that ended at the Dixie 44. They also held Pasco in check through the air and on the ground, limiting the Pirates to 2-of-13 passing for 30 yards and 77 yards rushing.
"I was really pleased with our defense," said Caparaso. "Anytime a defense gets a shutout against speed like they have, that's a tremendous thing."
On their third drive, the Rebels started at the Pirates’ 37 and marched to the 2-yard line in eight plays. River Wood then took the ball over the goal line to put Dixie up 6-0 in the second quarter.
Wood added a 1-yard TD a few minutes later on a drive that started at the Pasco 30. Garion Young’s two-point run gave Dixie Hollins a 14-0 lead at the half. Wood racked up 106 yards at the break and finished with 130 on 21 carries.
The Rebels extended their advantage on their first drive of the second half. Young took the handoff from the Dixie Hollins 20 to the 40. A penalty on the play put the team at the Pasco 45. Five plays later, Young caught Fernando Monroe’s 35-yard pass in the front right corner of the end zone. Monroe finished the game 10 for 15 and 111 yards.
Caparaso, who took over the team's offense this year, credited the recent hire of Greg Wicktor, who coached with him at Spoto, for improving the team's productivity.
“That has really turned the tide for us offensively,” Caparaso said.