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Smith takes Sharks to Regional Finals

By Danny Aiello Jr

Twitter: @DannyAielloJr

 

DeShawn Smith stole the show once again Friday, rushing for 445 yards and six touchdowns as Nature Coast beat River Ridge 42-33.

In the playoffs, where it is make history or be history, the Sharks advanced to the Regional Final for the first time in school history behind a tailback who seems to keep shattering records.

“I’m just trying to do what it takes for my team to win.” Smith said. “If it takes less carries and I need to play defense, I will.”

Smith's legs look to take the Sharks to the Final Four

Smith’s legs look to take the Sharks to the Final Four

Humble words for a tailback who is over 3,000 yards this season and now the nation’s record holder for rushing touchdowns in a season.

In a game where River Ridge (10-2) RB Chris Schwarz became the all-time career rushing leader for Pasco county, it was Smith who would have the upper hand.

On the game’s second play Schwarz would scamper 65-yards into the end zone for a 7-0 Royal Knights lead.

On the next play for the Sharks, Smith showed his video game-like moves as he sprinted 80 yards to set the tone for this clash of the titans.

“It was a war for both of us.” Sharks coach Justin Worden said. “Real tough trying to stop those backs.”

Schwarz would continue the one-up war of the backs, scoring with 13 seconds left to give the visitors a 21-20 lead going into the half.

“Schwarz is the real deal,” Worden said. “He’s a hammer.”

Schwarz would finish with 267 yards on 37 carries, but the Nature Coast defense and Smith would turn on the jets in the second half.

Smith, the Hernando County Player of the Year, added three touchdown runs of 31,76 and 4 yards.

He would also block a 31-yard field goal attempt in what proved to be a turning point for the Sharks.

“He’s special.” Worden said. “Sometimes when you have something special you just have to sit back and watch it.”

Up next, the Sharks will travel to Clay High School in Green Cove Springs for the Regional Finals. Kickoff is set for Friday at 7:30pm.

 

 

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Comments
  • Incidentally…now that the season is over for NCT…I certainly hope all of you super fans that are so supportive of your boys stay after administration and all those great teachers there toake sure young Deshawn Smith gets his qualifying scores (which he does not have yet) to make it to a Division I program where he belongs. I hope just as much energy is put into supporting his future as there was riding his back all season.

    Saturday, 28 November 2015, 6:47 pm
  • Danny … You can contact me and I will help you find what you need if you like.

    Saturday, 28 November 2015, 6:31 pm
  • I am a grandparent of a Grandson that graduated from Nature Coast with Honors and was on their Soccer Team . My Granddaughter is a junior at NC and she also played soccer for that school..That school is a great school with great teachers and coaches . . Hernando County and myself are very Proud of NCT Football team ! Go Sharks!!

    Saturday, 28 November 2015, 12:37 am
  • No matter if you get behind them or not they will still be celebrated while your sitting back digging!!!! Old grumpy people that have nothing else to do but criticise. #naturecoasthaters

    Friday, 27 November 2015, 9:25 pm
  • Excuse me..paid for infractions in the past.

    Thursday, 26 November 2015, 8:24 pm
  • I am in agreement with Erik. Coaches know nothing will get done so they don’t speak up. Besides, its administrations responsibility not a coach who when broken down makes about ten cents per hour. The point has never been about not supporting these incredible student athletes. Its about holding adults responsible. And for Danny, with all do respect, you are on the outside looking in and appear under the Nature Coast spell. They have paid fines in the past.

    Thursday, 26 November 2015, 8:23 pm
  • I want those boys to do well. I have said that. Coaches say move on and let it go because it is clear nothing will ever be done unless pressure is applied to the administration and the FHSAA. They prey on the fact that nothing will be thoroughly investigated

    Thursday, 26 November 2015, 7:01 am
  • Danny, there is plenty on file with the FHSAA. Additionally, there is a reason why the county doesn’t get behind them, that is not a mystery. To ask a coach to publicly put his or her name to the accusations when he knows the accusations will not be thoroughly investigated is to put that coach at professional risk. The shenanigans at NCT are well known throughout this county. If you ask a coach or AD off the record Danny you will hear plenty. If you don’t know or haven’t seen evidence then you simply are not looking very hard. Again, other schools in this county don’t get behind them for a reason. I will relate to you my personal experiences as a coach but until I see some evidence that it is being taken seriously and legitimately being investigated then I will not publicly attach my name to anything and many other coaches feel the same way.

    Wednesday, 25 November 2015, 9:00 pm
  • Proud NCT parent. I guess you didn’t read my last post. Specifically where I said I wished those boys the very best on the field. It is the adults and those in positions to right these wrongs done to our kids that need dealing with. Starting with the boys basketball coach. RNRF, if you do some digging you will find a great deal. Check with the report filed with the FHSAA regarding Rohan Blackwood and others. Of course you will find “no wrongdoing” because it was never actually investigated. It has Happened in just about every sport at that school. Again, using addresses that turn out to be vacant lots, using addresses that turn out to be abandoned housing. It’s all there and it’s all real. I wish those boys the very best in the region finals. This does not change the fact that the culture needs to change.

    Wednesday, 25 November 2015, 3:09 pm
  • So what can we do about their cheating Erik? Can’t RNRF help?

    Wednesday, 25 November 2015, 1:04 pm
  • Shame on all of you that want to tarnish a perfect season so far. My son is part of this great team and they have earn the right to be in this position thru hard work, blood, sweat and tears. I see my son everyday go thru aches and pains and continues to show up to practice with no quitting in site which started during summer break while the rest of us where in vacation. Here we are getting ready for the holidays and where is our NCT Football Team Practicing on Thanksgiving Day for the Regional Finals on Black Friday. Nothing is given to this kids, yes some are zone in and others were part of a lottery, but why should any of this matter.at the end of the day you must show up and earn your stripes to be part of the team no matter where you came from.Come out and support this special moment in our county history. Go Sharks!

    Wednesday, 25 November 2015, 11:56 am
  • Proud NCT parent and Nature Coast Alum. Those boys do work hard and deserve credit for their success. What you fail to recognize is that adults are taking their talents and exploiting them. Nature Coast has a long history of recruiting and they get away with it because of lack of resources at the state level. I have FIRST HAND knowledge of their activities over a period of years. It sends the wrong message to young athletes that athletics is more important. Deshawn Smith is a wonderful talent and would have succeeded wherever he went athletically. But isn’t that the point? Exploiting young people is wrong. Best of luck to those boys on the field. Shame on the administration who looks the other way and has since the school opened. Even more shame on the coaches who persist with this culture. Proof has been submitted to the state. It’s there in black and white….the school recruits athletes….it’s not even really a question. Where is Rian Williams now? He was pushed through Natyre Coast with at best a 4th grade reading level. He went to college and could not perform academically because of it. He was taken advantage of. He is just one of many at that school. Do some checking on the Rohan Blackwood situation.

    Wednesday, 25 November 2015, 10:16 am
  • Nature coast was originated under the pretense they would not have sports and be what its title states. A technical school. In theory this is a great idea for our kids. The fact they have athletics puts them at an unfair advantage. Coaches have told athletes ” I can get you in.” I have spoken directly to student athletes who have told me this fact. No other school can say or do that. That in itself is recruiting. Yes, some are zoned, and this young man would break records anywhere he went. And the kids work hard. And yes, some of their coaches are very good. However, so are other county coaches. But, to say nature coast plays fair is simply not true. Yes, i have been doing resarch for ten years. Ask other county coaches as well.

    Tuesday, 24 November 2015, 10:58 pm
    • What do you mean ” no other school can do that” Are you that blind? Any coach or teacher can have advantages from any school. Also, the public does have school choice. I still don’t get the point of directing good athletes “out of zone”

      Wednesday, 25 November 2015, 12:52 pm
  • if anything, Nature Coast being a tech school works against it! Students can withdraw and go to their home school for no reason whatsoever. But only the school board can approved students to attend Nature Coast Tech

    Tuesday, 24 November 2015, 10:43 pm
  • I still don’t understand your point @ Erik. Why does it matter where he lives/zoned and where he goes to school? Making statements like this are just mean! Good and bad athletes are everywhere.

    Tuesday, 24 November 2015, 3:09 pm
  • Bite your tongue Erik!None of these boys are recruited.Because I am sure if the team recruited they would’ve put my 9th grader on their Varsity team.The ignorance every week of all of you people with your comments against this team is ridiculous.Do your research and know your facts before you talk negatively about amazing children and damn good coaches.These boys worked their butts off all year to be where they are at.You sir should be ashamed of yourself!

    Tuesday, 24 November 2015, 3:00 pm
  • He is zoned for hernando but nature coast was a technical school when he went his freshman year (which means he can go there for a certain program). Everything is completely legal and you’re trying to make something out of nothing. You are arrogant and assume that just because someone is doing something great, that something bad has to come with it.

    Tuesday, 24 November 2015, 2:38 pm
  • Wonder what school Smith was actually zoned for when he enrolled at Natyre Coast. My guess is the same school Rian Williams was zoned for….or Blackwood or a number of other “student athletes” who have attended that school. We celebrate Smith’s accomplishments, and we should. But not at the expense of losing sight of why these kids go to school. The history is sordid and clear. Addresses that turn out to be vacant lots or abandoned properties. A basketball coach who goes to the local basketball league games and buys shoes and food for kids in middle school. The FHSAA remains asleep at the wheel on this. Will you be too RNRF?

    Tuesday, 24 November 2015, 1:20 pm

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