In addition to St. Cloud’s impressive showing against Gateway, week two saw the Osceola Kowboys roll to a second consecutive impressive win as they downed Cypress Creek, 56-0.
In addition, Liberty picked up a 16-12 win over Lakeland’s George Jenkins High School; while the Celebration Storm dropped a 41-34 shootout with Freedom.
OSCEOLA 56, CYPRESS CREEK 0
For a second straight week, Osceola made short work of an opponent – beating Cypress Creek 56-0. As was the case against Liberty a week before, the Kowboys put 40-plus points on the board in the first half and triggered a running clock for the entire second half.
Chad Mascoe and Blake Birchler combined to go five for five in the passing game for 112 yards and three touchdowns. Malachi Reenie caught two passes for 78 yards and two scores; while Ja’Randy Swint and Izaiah Jean-Baptiste each scored rushing touchdowns for Osceola. Special teams and the defense also accounted for three scores, including a touchdown by linebacker Lamont Lee.
Because of the play of the defense and special teams, as well as the efficiency of the Osceola offense, the Kowboys only had five offensive possessions and ran just 18 plays in the game, gaining 181 yards of total offense. It was the second consecutive shutout for Osceola, who has now outscored opponents 112-0 on the season. Osceola returns to action on Friday night, traveling to St. Cloud for the 97th edition of one of the state’s oldest football rivalries.
BISHOP MOORE 35, TOHOPEKALIGA 14
Luke Hendrick completed 14 of 18 passes for 242 yards and four touchdowns as Bishop Moore – the 15th ranked team in the region – slipped past Tohopekaliga, 35-14. The Tigers fell to 0-2 after playing their second consecutive game against a highly ranked regional opponent.
QB Tyler Wesley provided most of the Toho offense, completing touchdown passes to Sir Giles and Luis Maddox.
“I thought we played a pretty good game against another ranked quality opponent,” Head Coach Marc Deas said. “We cleaned up a lot of our mistakes from a week ago and continue to show improvement while getting better on a day-to-day basis.”
Toho, 0-2 on the season, will host Liberty, 0-2, on Friday night.
LAKE WALES 52, HARMONY 21
Lake Wales jumped out to a 20-0 first quarter lead and never looked back in a 52-21 win over Harmony on Friday night.
“We ran into another really talented team on Friday. Lake Wales went undefeated in the regular season last year and despite losing some quality players, they returned a lot of talent too,” Harmony head coach Don Simon said. “They had three outstanding running backs and were playing two of them at the same time. It made it difficult to defend.”
Lake Wales had eight rushing touchdowns in the game, including three by Marquish Seabon.
Despite the loss, the Longhorns did manage to put 21 points on the board in the third quarter. Running back Tyler Eman continued his outstanding season, rushing for 79 yards and two touchdowns on 12 carries. Simon also lauded the play of his offensive line and sophomore quarterback Ayden Parks. “I thought our offensive line did a really solid job in both pass pro and run blocking against a really good team. I continue to be pleased with the development of Ayden Parks at quarterback. He threw the ball really well.”
The Longhorns, 0-2, travel to Bishop Moore (2-1) on Friday.
LIBERTY 16, GEORGE JENKINS 12
Senior Defensive Lineman Alain Jacquet blocked a punt with six minutes remaining in the game and Kelly Thelsume recovered it for a touchdown to lead Liberty to a come-from-behind 16-12 win over George Jenkins. The game started off well for Liberty, as Manny Gonzalez-Palma booted a 27-yard field goal and John Smith fired a 15-yard touchdown pass to Jessiah Rambert as the Chargers took a 10-0 lead.
“After that initial lead, I think Jenkins realized they were a lot bigger than us and started to grind the ball out on the ground,” Liberty Head Coach Brandon Pennington said. Jenkins would score two touchdowns to take a 12-10 lead into the locker room.
The second half turned into a defensive struggle, as the teams traded punts for the remainder of the game. But midway through the fourth quarter, Jacquet broke through the line and blocked a punt that Thelsume recovered for the eventual game-winning score.
“Our defense played great all night and obviously we were happy with the win,” Pennington said. “Our offense is still a work in progress though.”
He went on to praise the overall play of Jacquet, who was the leading tackler, recorded two sacks and had an additional 17-yard tackle for loss.
Liberty returns to action on Friday night at Tohopekaliga. “The Tigers have some talent and our work will be cut out for us,” Pennington added. “They are 0-2 but opened the season with two outstanding opponents. We will have to play mistake –free football against them.”
WINTER HAVEN 49, POINCIANA 3
Heading into Friday’s game with Winter Haven, Poinciana Head Coach Randy Beeken knew his team would face long odds at coming away with a win.
“We knew they were a bigger, faster team with a lot more depth and when you are facing that it is not a good recipe for success,” Beeken said.
That prophecy came true as the Blue Devils manhandled the Eagles, 49-3.
“They were extremely physical and pretty much pushed us around all game,” Beeken noted.
Rhys Marsh provided the lone points on the night with a 38-yard field goal.
Beeken did say the game would have a positive effect on his sophomore quarterback Tyler Williams.
“He was faced with a lot of adversity the entire game and never quit. He willed us down the field on our final possession of the night, unfortunately we ended up fumbling on the one yard line.”
Because of the coronavirus, Lake Region was forced to back out of Friday’s scheduled game with Poinciana, leaving the Eagles to scramble for an opponent.
“We were able to secure a game with Ridge, unfortunately we had to trade a game with an opponent that we thought we could be competitive with for one that is a regional power,” Beeken said.
FREEDOM 41, CELEBRATION 34
Cutting Freedom’s lead to seven with a touchdown with four minutes to go in the game and all three timeouts remaining, Celebration elected to kick off deep. The strategy backfired as Freedom was able to convert a third and six for a first down and run out the clock in a 41-34 win over the Storm.
“It was a close and exciting game, where we definitely had our chances,” Storm Head Coach Jay Sobke said. “It came down to the end and they were able to convert that third down play.”
Although Celebration fell to 0-2 on the season and will face one of the area’s top teams next week in Ocoee, Sobke remained upbeat on what he is seeing from his young team.
“We have just five seniors in our starting 22 and we are playing a lot of juniors and sophomores. We knew with our schedule this year was going to be difficult, but these young men are getting a lot of experience that will help set us up for the future.”
Two of those sophomores, quarterback Foster Searcy and running back Oneil Senatus, had big games against Freedom as Senatus rushed for more than 100 yards and Searcy had a 300-yard passing game.