Nature Coast Rolls, Hornets Dropped in Opener
Nature Coast 33, Bradenton-Southeast 14
Nature Coast (1-0) scored 14 quick points Friday, and rode early momentum for an easy 33-14 victory over Southeast High School to open the 2016 season.
In the first contest without Player of the Year Deshawn Smith, the Sharks scored on all three phases of the game and looked more diverse on the attack than they had in years past.
Nick Sineus returned a kick 70-yards for a touchdown to open the game for visiting Nature Coast, and after a quick stop by the defense Brian Haygood found Gil Delgado for a 58-yard touchdown strike.
The Sharks were far from done however, as they would tack on more scores to make sure the game was out of reach.
TJ Owens, who transferred from Springstead over the summer, showed his explosiveness out of the backfield with a 50-yard touchdown run, and Mike Weston got his name into the Shark backfield mix with a 60-yard burst for another score.
All told the Sharks ran for 213 yards, while Haygood completed 5-of-10 passing for 58 yards and the lone score through the air.
Nature Coast will look to tighten things up offensively and cut down on turnovers as they will host Hudson Friday at 7:30 p.m.
Ridgewood 56, Weeki Wachee 34
Javon Wright and Chris Melton each ran for over 150 yards and scored a combined seven times Friday, as Ridgewood held off a Weeki Wachee comeback, winning 56-34.
A more back and forth affair than the scoreboard indicated, Ridgewood (1-0) jumped out to an early 22-0 lead behind the legs of Wright.
Wright (153 yards) would score on runs of 6,17 and 2 yards, and a pair of 2-point conversion passes to Michael Bautista had the visitors up 22-0 with a minute left in the first quarter.
Weeki Wachee (0-1) quarterback Alec Cromie then found Sebastian Class over the middle, who turned on the jets to score from 57-yards away, ending the first quarter but giving life to the Hornets.
The game remained 22-7, until a crazy third quarter which initially saw Wright score his fourth rushing score from 20-yards out and another 2-pt conversion to Bautista making it 30-7 Rams.
Weeki Wachee would then score on a Montae Bostick 45-yard touchdown run and Cromie found Shaun Young for an 8-yard score cutting the lead to 30-20.
After a Bautista fumble, Cromie (229 yards, 2TD) found Eli Mendoza for a 55-yard catch, setting up Bostick to score from 5-yards out, cutting the lead to four.
Jayvon Wilson would add a 6-yard rushing touchdown for Ridgewood before Bostick returned the ensuing kickoff making it 36-34 Rams at the end of the third.
Despite the effort, the Hornets would get no closer, as Ridgewood behind the legs of Melton (239 yards) would score on runs of 6, 45 and 25 yards in the final quarter, closing out the victory.
Weeki Wachee travels to Belleview next week. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m.
For all Hernando County football updates, follow Danny Aiello Jr on Twitter: @DannyAielloJr