It’s tough at the top…
Along with the three teams at the top of 6A-9 in Pinellas, this district will be as tough as they come at the top if Lake Wales, Lake Gibson and Auburndale all live up to their potential. The district gives us our marquee match-up in the first month when Lake Gibson travels to Lake Wales on the 18th of September. That game will also be televised on Bright House Sports Networks. The final week of the season “could” give us the chaos or it could signal the status quo has been met when Auburndale travels to Lake Wales on the 30th. Only one of these teams finished under .500 last season as Lake Region went 3-7.
Can the ‘Hounds track the right scent?…
It won’t be easy. On paper, Auburndale has an unbelievable amount of talent on both sides of the ball and can make some serious noise in this district. The odds couldn’t be any more stacked against them, however. They obviously need to defeat the Braves and the Highlanders and yeah, the numbers aren’t so good. You have to go back over a decade to October 15th, 2004 to when the Bloodhounds defeated Lake Gibson. During this 0-10 stretch, they’ve had 40 points or more scored on them seven times while scoring over 20 points just twice. The one time they scored over 30 points, they gave up 67 to Lake Gibson in 2010. Their record versus Lake Wales isn’t much brighter as they stand 2-8 against the Highlanders since 2005 with their only victory in the last nine seasons coming in 2012 with a 21-0 win. This season things could change, but they’ll have to break some seriously bad mojo to do it.
If not this season, WHEN?!?…
If the Braves can’t get to Orlando this season, then when? There’s no need to break out the roster since you can safely assume over 60% of it is either nationally-ranked prospects or on a watch list somewhere in the recruiting universe. Their biggest asset is perhaps in the trenches were it matters the most and if injuries stay far away from them, the 6A North bracket is wide open like a WR that’s just broken a DB’s ankles. Who knows? If their counterparts on the other side of the state along the I-4 corridor (Mainland) perform at the same caliber that Lake Gibson can perform at, we could be staring at a corridor state title match-up. Of course, there’s that pesky Armwood waiting for them in one of the first two rounds of the regional playoffs, but hey…why let facts get in the way of a good argument?