Small Schools Doing Big Things in 2015

The small schools in our area have reason to brag about doing some big things thus far in the 2015 season. Currently there are three undefeated schools from the Tampa Bay region in Class 2A along with two undefeated programs in the Sunshine State Athletic Conference’s Coral Bay Division making big noise. That doesn’t include the several one-loss programs that could still ruin the plans of these teams and some heavyweights that are finally starting to pull things together following a shaky start.

Currently, there are five players in the top fifteen in rushing in the state’s 2A classification with four of those young men sitting inside the top ten. There are also three players inside the top ten in passing statistics as well through the first four weeks of the season. Seffner Christian’s Karmi Mackey is currently the leader in Class 2A with 761 yards on 61 carries averaging 254 yard per game. The junior running back has added 7 touchdowns on the ground for the Crusaders that are sitting at 2-1 in their first season as a member of a classification and will get his skills tested when he faces Admiral Farragut this Friday.

Indian Rocks Christian, the runners-up to Victory Christian in the Class 2A Finals last December started out rough against Tampa Catholic and Clearwater Central Catholic, but has since rebounded nicely with victories over Calvary Christian and Frostproof and can boast about having two of their rushers (Theo Anderson and Zeke McGaughy) inside of the top ten statistically in their classification.

Cambridge Christian, Carrollwood Day School and Northside Christian are all out of the gates quickly with combined records of 11-0 and have done it with a bevy of underclassmen throughout their rosters. CDS’ Yashin Wooten, just a sophomore at 5-foot-10 and 180-pounds–currently sits at #2 in rushing in the state with 563 yards on 56 carries and six touchdowns. His teammate, freshman quarterback Raymond Woodie has completed 22 of his 43 passes for 463 yards with four touchdowns and three interceptions.

Northside’s Griffin Alstott standing at 6-foot-2 and 190-pounds has led his Mustangs on offense to a 4-0 record completing 45 of his 91 passes for 597 yards with three touchdowns and five interceptions. Cambridge’s Andrew Cunningham–just a sophomore has rushed just 16 times this season, but statistically is 12th in the state with 282 yards and five touchdowns through the first three games. Admiral Farragut’s Keondrae Miller–who is just a sophomore just completed his third consecutive game of recording at least four touchdowns either on the ground or through the air.

The most exciting aspect about all of this– is that these teams will all have to play each other–and soon. As mentioned earlier, Mackey and his Seffner Christian squad face-off against Farragut this week while Northside and CDS will square off in a huge non-district tilt in two weeks on the 9th of October. Farragut hosts Indian Rocks Christian in the district-opener for both squads next week while Cambridge and CDS are on a collision on the 30th of October for the district crown on the same night that Northside and Farragut could be doing the very same thing the last week of the district play.

But wait–there’s more. There’s also two other teams that are seeking state titles in the Independent section of things with Santa Fe Catholic and Saint Stephen’s both starting out 4-0, both having impressive wins over last seasons’ champions Windermere Prep out of Orlando–a team that was 10-0 and boat-racing teams last season. The Crimson Hawks of Santa Fe Catholic defeated Windermere 54-0 last week while Saint Stephen’s did their thing to WPS 53-41 during the opening week of the season. The Falcons of Saint Stephen’s are led by sophomore Fred Billy (5-foot-10, 182-pounds) and his athletic play from the QB position. He’s completed 15-of-28 for 306 yards, while throwing for 8 touchdowns and no interceptions. Billy has also added 333 yards on 20 carries and five touchdowns on the season. These two teams have an epic showdown looming in Lakeland in two weeks.