Ruskin, FL – All area counties canceled school on Friday. Most games were cancelled or rescheduled for this morning. However, East Bay vs Lennard was played as scheduled and the I-75 rivalry was not without its promised drama.
The East Bay Indians traveled south to Lennard high for a 7A-9 district battle. East Bay entered the game with a 4-2 record and winless in the district. Back to back losses to Durant and Plant City. The Longhorns would enter the game at 2-3 (1-1), defeating two teams who are still currently winless. Lennard opened the game on defense slowing the big play Indian offense on their first possession. Lennard carried over their defensive momentum to the offensive side of the ball as Jahryn Bailey rattled off a big first down run on the Lennard’s first possession. But, the fire cooled after that.
This was a defensive slugfest until East Bay RB Davonte Williams took a pitch down the East Bay sideline 35 yards to the end zone. East Bay took a 7-0 lead into halftime. Note: Lennard kicked off the first half and again kicked off the ball to East Bay to start the second half. After speaking with Keith Chattin (Lennard HC) we chalk this up as a communication error with the official and Lennard’s speaking captain. Longhorns deferred to the second half, but captain told official they would kick when the second half rolled around. That’s pretty much it.
East Bay ATH Bobby Brown III initiated the second half scoring with a 61 yard run in front of his own bench. Brown also recorded an interception on the night. Down 17-0, Lennard would not go away. With less than 8 minutes remaining the Longhorns would start a massive march down the field ending with a Jahkese Cruz to Jeremiah Garris TD pass. The two-point conversion would fail. But the ensuing onside kick would convert. Under a minute left to play the Longhorns seemed to be putting together another scoring drive before East Bay’s Hassan Abdullah intercepted the Cruz pass and that would do it. East Bay moves to 5-2 (1-2) and Lennard falls to 2-4(1-2)