It’s time–crunch time. It’s time to go and win a ring if you’re in the lower classifications and it’s time to win-and-start prepping to win a ring next week if you’re in the higher classifications. We’ve got six games on tap this week. Some of them include teams from our area, while a few other games are simply TOO GOOD to ignore. Grab your favorite chairs and your popcorn. AND LIGHT THOSE FUSES!
Bishop Moore (12-1) at Jesuit (13-0) -5A Semifinals
The Hornets are swarming and on a mission to play for a state title literally minutes from their campus next week in Orlando. They knocked off Hallandale in a shootout last week–something that they’re not used to this season and something their not accustomed to in-general based on their run-heavy attack. They’ve got maulers in their trenches and three backs that can carry the rock for 6-11 yards per carry each time. But wait–Jesuit’s obviously got some ground-and-pound on their mind as well and can put it up and over the top of B-Moore defense via the pass though. The Tigers haven’t been to Orlando since 1992. It’s time for a change. Winner of this one plays in Orlando next Friday afternoon against Wakulla or Clay. LIGHT THE FUSE!
Tate (10-2) at Armwood (13-0) -6A Semifinals
Do a Twitter keyword search “Tate Football” and have fun with that one–the Aggies are coming from pretty much the Alabama-Florida state line to play this one after knocking off Pine Forest last week. You done searching yet? Good–cause needless to say, the Aggies are feeling themselves. They’ve got a pair of 1,000-yard rushers and a QB that’s thrown for 2,100 yards this season. But do they know–like, DO THEY REALLY UNDERSTAND what they’re getting themselves into? The Hawks are giving precisely zero you-know-whats about their opponents feelings this season and with a team that wants to play smash mouth coming into their house talking noise this week could be PRECISELY what the doctor ordered for the ‘Wood. The Hawks say bring your physicality from the Panhandle and enjoy the 7,000-hour ride home when you’re done jawing. Winner will play in Orlando against either Naples or Miami Central. Now–LIGHT THE FUSE!
Raines (12-1) vs. Booker T. Washington (8-5) -4A State Championship
The Vikings are the only public school in Duval County’s long history to win a state championship. Emphasis on “public” though since Bolles, UC, and Trinity Christian exist. The Tornadoes lost to Central, Northwestern, Columbus, Jackson and St. Thomas Aquinas this season–it’s definitely a “rebuilding” season for them (LOL at though–because, state finals AGAIN)–but losing to those neighborhood schools from Dade has made BTW simply a better team in many regards and prepped them for this moment against a squad that’s arguably as talented as any team NOT named Aquinas on their schedule this season–yeah, they’re pretty good. This one COULD be a penalty fest–but the marching bands and the splash plays will have you locked into this one–we’re positive. LIGHT THAT FUSE!
Cambridge Christian (12-0) vs. University Christian (10-3) -2A State Championship
The Fightin’ Christians from University Christian are after their eighth ring in their history while Cambridge Christian is seeking their first title while in the midst of their first postseason trip ever. We’ve looked and studied every aspect of this one as much as possible and there’s a million different ways it could go wonderfully awesome for the Lancers–and million different ways it could go horribly wrong–but one thing’s for certain–they’re going to bring the fight to a team that nearly all of Northeast Florida thinks they can’t beat and shouldn’t be on the same field with. A fight that’s going to leave some scars on UC regardless of the outcome. Time to go win a ring. Time to LIGHT THAT FUSE!
Flanagan (10-2) at Columbus (12-1) -8A Semifinals
The Falcons have posted three consecutive shutouts in the postseason and the last two have come against offensive powerhouses Deerfield Beach and Delray Beach-Atlantic. They’ve outscored their opponents 91-0 in the postseason while Columbus has trounced their three opponents 112-22 in their three postseason contests. Flanagan was supposed to be playing for a title last season against Apopka before the Explorers clipped the Falcons wings 16-12 in the state semis last season. It’s the quintessential “styles make fights” contest where something has to give. Winner plays either West Orange or Kissimmee-Osceola.
West Orange (12-1) at Kissimmee-Osecola (12-1) -8A Semifinals
Points-on-points-on-points. Of course now it has no other option but to be a defensive stubble after that build up–but with the offensive firepower both these teams possess and the fact that they tied 28-28 in the preseason, we think it’s going to be one of the most entertaining games this season has produced. The Kowboys were in the 7A title game last season and West Orange is finally past the obstacle that’s been Apopka in recent seasons. The Warriors are led on offense by Auburn-commit Woody Barrett (QB) and Osceola’s led by 5,000+ rusher and Virginia-commit LaDerrien Wilson. Keep your eyes peeled for the match-up of super-talented WR Eddie McDoom for West Orange versus CB Carlos Becker. Both are being recruited by half of the power-five conferences and are worth the price of admission. Winner plays for a title against either Flanagan or Columbus next Saturday evening in Orlando. LIGHT THAT FUSE!