The start to the football season was rough for St. Cloud, but the ending could very well be the happy opposite.
The Bulldogs conclude the season Friday at home on Senior Night with a chance at a four-game winning streak to close the year against first-year Polk County school Discovery (4-5), who held late on to beat Poinciana (2-7) on Friday.
Despite falling behind 11-0 and 18-7 to East River last week, the Bulldogs (3-6) exploded for 25 second-quarter points to drop the Falcons (4-5), 46-18, in the final District 7A-5 game for both teams.
The Bulldogs got big plays in all phases of the game, putting up 510 yards (306 passing, 204 rushing), and linebacker Caleb Endicott returned a fumble 14 yards for a touchdown that put St. Cloud up for good, 22-18, midway through the second quarter.
Quarterbacks Garhett King and Koron Perrin combined to go 9-for-16 for 192 yards and three touchdowns. Romeo Medina (6-137-2 TDs) and Seth Johnson (6-105-1) caught big balls, Johnson added 128 rushing yards and another score, and Bennett Priester hauled in a 54-yard TD strike.
“It was an awesome atmosphere,” Coach Bryan Smart said. “We really needed that, we didn’t start off too strong but our kids fought and battled and momentum is a heck of a thing.”
King, who took over the starting job from Perrin mid-season, has 822 passing yards and could eclipse the 1,000-yard mark Friday.
“Our QB room is awesome. When we put King in there, Koron accepted it and moved to receiver. Those two are like the kids at Alabama, always pulling for each other and they know we are better with both of them on the field.
“Seth Johnson had a typical Seth game. It’s very upsetting for me that this is his last game with us. His future is so bright, and Seth is the perfect example of a star player staying the course and believing in his school. We might not have had the best seasons the last two years but we are building something special and Seth Johnson is a big reason for that.”