ORLANDO – The Cardinal Gibbons Chiefs secured their first state title in school history on Friday afternoon at Camping World Stadium by virtue of a blowout over the visitors from the Ocala area. Gibbons scored 45 unanswered points en route to their first title after the Colts jumped out to 10-3 lead at the end of the first quarter. While Cardinal Gibbons had been without their starting QB and Kentucky commit Nick Scalzo, North Marion lost their senior starter Corey Wilsher to a significant lower leg injury in the first quarter, clearing the way for sophomore Quintin Gross to make his mark. Before Wilsher departed the contest, the senior was a scorching hot 5-for-7 for 42 yards after one drive. Gross finished the day for North Marion 8-of-14 for 31 yards and an interception.
Juxtapose that situation with Cardinal Gibbons’ sophomore signal-caller, Brody Palhegyi, who entered the final game of the season having completed 32-of-47 for 429 yards and 5TD’s in the postseason to pair with 116 yards rushing on 26 carries and a touchdown. Palhegyi made his mark from the onset of the action on Friday however, finishing the game with 136 yards passing on 10-of-16 to go with 48 yards rushing on 9 carries. Yahweh Jeudy led the Chiefs on defense with 13 tackles, adding to his total of 112 on the season. That was his seventh time reaching double-digits in tackles this season.
The Chiefs harassed the Colts QB’s all afternoon finishing with 6 sacks for a total of 41 yards lost led by Trevis Robinson’s two sacks for 33 yards lost. In fact, Gibbons’ defensive effort was just as impressive as their offensive outburst. After North Marion’s first two drives, they had 10 points on 19 plays totaling 139 yards for exactly 8 minutes off the clock. Their remaining 9 drives totaled 23 plays for minus 42 yards and they held the ball for just 13 minutes, 50 seconds the rest of the game.
The Colts finish the season 12-3 with losses to state-ranked Ocala Vanguard and Gainesville by a total of 9 points in the regular season. Cardinal Gibbons finish the season 13-2 after rolling off 13 straight victories. The Chiefs lost their first two games to perennial powerhouses Miami Central and Milton (GA) before failing to lose again the rest of the season.
109: Total yards for North Marion on offense—their lowest total of the season
Vincent Davis: 20-133, 2TD’s. That was the fourth time Davis went for 100+ on 20+ carries this season. Davis averaged just 69 yards per game during the regular season.
Brody Palhegi: 32-47, 429 yards, 5TD’s-3INT’s on the season + 26 carries for 116 yards and TD. During the postseason, 16-22, 246 yards, 4TD’s-2INT’s during postseason, 10-16, 138 yards passing, TD + 21-106 rushing
21-for-223: The number of combined penalties for yardage by both teams.
19: the average margin of victory in the postseason for Cardinal Gibbons
38: the final margin of victory for Gibbons in the state final