Another week into the HSFB season, and things are heating up around the country.
With 19 players in the 2017 recruiting class at this moment, Miami has one of the largest group of commits in America. Some of that group was unable to showcase their talents this week due to weather impacting games. Here’s your full recap:
QB N’Kosi Perry and Ocala (FL) Vanguard — ranked #2 in Florida’s 6A classification —kept their season rolling, demolishing Gainesville (FL) HS 56-7 in another District 5-6A game next Friday night. This was a rematch from last year which saw Gainesville beat Vanguard twice, ending their season in the 2nd round of the playoffs. Suffice it to say that Perry and the Knights got a measure of revenge on Friday night, as the win eliminated Gainesville from playoff contention, meaning the Hurricanes (yes, Gainesville HS’s mascot is the Hurricanes) will miss the playoffs for the first time since 2008.
Perry and the Knights offense dominated from jump. Here are some stats from you, courtesy of Perry himself, who was chillin’ on the bench before halftime this week:
My stats In 1 & a half quarters....— R.I.P. Gotti (@KosiPerry) October 15, 2016
Passing Tds: 3
Rushing Tds: 1
Perry meant 8/9 passing, not 8 completions and 9 incompletions for 8/17 passing, for the record.
Vanguard looks to continue their undefeated season with a trip to Ocala (FL) Lake Weir for another district game on Friday night. That should be light work for Vanguard, as Lake Weir is 1-6 overall and 0-2 in district play on the year.
QB Cade Weldon and Tampa (FL) Jefferson evened their record as they beat Tampa (FL) Newsome 34-13 on Friday.
The night started off rough for Jefferson. Their bus got to the game late, and Weldon promptly had his first pass of the night — on Jefferson’s first offensive snap — intercepted by Newsome. After that, however, it was smooth sailing.
Weldon led the Jefferson to nearly 500 yards of total offense with his 353 yards passing on the night. Weldon had at least a couple TD passes, but it was hard to lock that number down. In any event, 353 yards passing is A LOT OF YARDS PASSING for a HS game. Like, A LOT a lot. Told you guys that Weldon was better than his ranking, lowered by virtue of him missing nearly his entire junior year with a knee injury.
Jefferson has the first of their 2 remaining District games on deck this week, as they travel to Tampa (FL) Middleton. For Jefferson to have a shot at the playoffs, they have to win this week and next week.
RB Robert Burns and the Miami (FL) Gulliver Prep Raiders’ had another bye week last week. They haven’t played in a couple weeks, as their previous game was canceled by Hurricane Matthew a week ago.
The Raiders get back on the field as they host Hialeah (FL) Champagnat Catholic on Friday afternoon (4:00pm kick).
WR Kevaughn Dingle and the Carol City (FL) Chiefs kept the magic going, beating Miami (FL) Norland 16-6 on Thursday night at Traz Powell Stadium.
Carol City is in the driver’s seat in District 16-6A with the win, as they’re the only team 2-0 in District.
With a playoff berth already locked up by virtue of other results, Carol City has a bye this week. They will face Miami (FL) Northwestern for the District Championship next Friday night.
WR Evidence Njoku and Wayne Hills (NJ) Wayne Hills had a bye this week.
They resume their season as they host Little Falls (NJ) Passaic Valley on Friday night.
TE Brian Polendey and Denton (TX) Guyer had their winning streak snapped, losing to #1 Allen (TX) 42-7 on Friday night.
One of the top teams in the country, Allen sprinted to a 28-7 halftime lead, before scoring 14 points in the 3rd quarter to get to the final score of the game.
A power running attack, Guyer was stymied by Allen, gaining only 174 yards on 48 carries (3.625 yards per carry). Guyer only completed 1 pass (out of 6) on the night, a 74 yard touchdown to Thabo Mwaniki. For Polendey, it was a lot of blocking and no catches on the night. But, like I’ve said before, that’s par for the course in the Guyer offense. Polendey has only been targeted a handful of times on the year.
Guyer hosts Wylie (TX) in a key district game on Friday night. Both teams are 3-1, but Guyer’s loss is to Allen, while Wylie’s loss is to Plano East, a team Guyer beat 34-6. Even with Wylie still having Allen on their schedule in coming weeks, this is a game that Guyer will want to win to get back into the thick of the playoff hunt.
OL Navaughn Donaldson and Miami (FL) Central Rockets lost a tight rivalry game on Friday night, losing to Miami (FL) Northwestern 45-44 in double overtime. This marked the first time in 9 years that the Bulls, a program that was the major powerhouse locally for years and won the 2007 HS National Championship, defeated their rivals the Rockets.
Central’s loss at the hands of Northwestern (The West for those from Dade County) means that, barring a miracle — a couple miracles, actually — the 4 time defending State Champions will be eliminated from playoff contention. This would be a major, huge, epic letdown for a team of Central’s caliber, and shows that HSFB in South Florida is loaded.
Due to a major scheduling snafu (a fireable offense, in my personal opinion), Miami Central’s season is finished after only 8 games. That means no practices. No more recruiting film. Nothing. It’s over. How the Central AD let that happen is beyond me. Incredibly poor planning on his part.
The only way Central will have another game is if Norland beats Northwestern this week AND Carol City beats Northwestern in 2 weeks to force a 3-way tiebreaker. If not, Donaldson and the Rockets have played their last snaps of the year. Crazy.
OL Zach Dykstra and the Spirit Lake (IA) Indianslost a tight one, falling 19-18 to Sargent Bluff (IA) Sargent Bluff-Luton on Friday night.
The loss drops Spirit Lake out of playoff contention, with SB-L facing Storm Lake — who previously defeated Spirit Lake — next week for the District championship.
Now 6-3 on the year, Spirit Lake will play for pride one last time, as they close their season with a trip to Sioux City (IA) Bishop Heelan Catholic on Friday Night.
OL Zalontae Hillery, ATH DeeJay Dallas and their Brunswick (GA) Glynn Academy Terrors lived up to their name this week. They beat crosstown rival Brunswick (GA) 35-28 on Friday night.
For his part, Dallas led the Terrors to victory with 136 yards and a touchdown rushing on the night. The Terrors may have been overmatched on talent — Brunswick has more guys with scholarship offers than does GA — but Dallas was the best player on the field Friday night, and that showed.
Glynn Academy looks to run their winning streak to 8 games with a trip to Richmond Hill (GA) on Friday night.
DT Jon Ford and the Ft. Lauderdale (FL) Dillard Panthers destoryed Oakland Park (FL) Northeast 47-0 in a key District game on Friday night for Homecoming.
Dillard travels to Plantation (FL) for a non-district game on Friday. The Panthers are still in the playoff hunt, but they will have to wait a week to compete for their playoff lives.
DE Jonathan Garvin and the Lake Worth (FL) Trojans beat Boca Raton (FL) 24-14 in the first of 3 consecutive district games. Lake Worth needs to win all their remaining District games to make the playoffs, so a 10pt win on the road is a good way to start.
The Trojans’ march to the playoffs continues this week as they host Delray Beach (FL) Atlantic in another defacto elimination game on Friday night.
DE D.J. Johnson and his Sacramento (CA) Luther Burbank Titans continued their run of strong play, beating Sacramento (CA) McClatchy 54-6 on Friday night. While I’m sure Johnson had his standard big game, the story for Burbank was sophomore Taniela Fisilau, who scored a school-record six touchdowns, including five in the first half.
Burbank has beaten their last 4 opponents — all district foes — 231-26, so they’re definitely clicking on all cylinders. They look to run their win streak to 4 games as they travel to Sacramento (CA) Florin on Friday night for another key district game.
LB Waynmon Steed helped Miami Central lost to rival Miami (FL) Northwestern 45-44 in double overtime. As previously stated, this all but eliminates Central from the playoffs, ending their run of 4 consecutive State Championships.
With no more games remaining on their schedule, it is likely that Miami Central’s season is over.
LB Bradley Jennings Jr. and Jacksonville (FL) Sandalwood lost to Jacksonville (FL) Mandarin 34-31 a District game on Friday night. The loss was Sandalwood’s first of the year.
The Saints look to bounce back and continue to chase a playoff berth with a home game against district foe DeLand (FL) on Friday night.
DB Trajan Bandy and the Miami (FL) Columbus Explorers had no trouble dispatching Miami Beach (FL) for a District game on Friday night. The Explorers won 49-6. Like many good CBs, Bandy saw few, if any, passes thrown his way on the night. He was solid in run support again, though — and underrated part of his game.
This week will undoubtedly be a tougher test for Columbus, as they face powerhouse Miami (FL) Booker T. Washington on Friday night.
DB Billy Gibson and Miami (FL) Southridge easily handled Homestead (FL) 47-0 in a district game on Friday night. The Spartans scored early and often in this game, and the defense pitched a second consecutive shutout.
Already with a playoff berth in hand, Southridge can win the District Championship when they travel to face Miami (FL) Palmetto on Friday night. Southridge shouldn’t overlook Palmetto, as they enter Friday’s game with an undefeated 6-0 (2-0 in District) record.
DB Brian Edwards and the Miramar (FL) Patriots went 2-0 on the week, beating district rival Weston (FL) Cypress Bay 43-0 on Monday night, and defeating local rival (by proximity, not district history) Hallandale (FL) 14-7 a non-district game on Friday night.
The Patriots face their neighborhood rival Miramar (FL) Everglades in the Mayor’s Cup game this week. Miramar can neither clinch nor be eliminated from playoffs this week. That will come next week as they face Davie (FL) Western in an elimination game.
P Zach Feagles and the Ridgewood (NJ) Maroons won a game vs Hackensack (NJ) Bergen Tech by forfeit. Beset with a rash of injuries, Bergen Tech initiated talks for forfeiture early in the week, and the forfeit was finalized on Tuesday afternoon.
With no game, Feagles was one of 3 players to take his official visit to Miami this past weekend.
Ridgewood will look to get back to winning the old fashioned way as they host Paterson (NJ) Kennedy on Friday night.
That’s it for this week.
Be sure to check back in next week to see how the current Canes commits are faring in their 2016 seasons.