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Football: Class 7A region quarterfinal rewind – Nov. 12

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Class 7A

2021 FHSAA Football State Championships 7A Football State Championships

Area recap

Tampa Bay Tech 30, Largo 7

The Titans, who had their first undefeated regular season, kept their perfect record intact by scoring a combined 23 points in the second and third quarter to break open a close game. Tampa Bay Tech’s defense has allowed just 49 points in its last six games.

Prime time performers

DT Jahiem Borden, Jr., Tampa Bay Tech: Recorded 10 tackles and two sacks in a win over Largo.

WR Tre’son Everett, Sr., Largo: His touchdown reception in the first quarter was the Packers’ lone score in a loss to Tampa Bay Tech.

WR Greg Gaines III, Sr., Tampa Bay Tech: Had six catches for 102 yards and a touchdown in a win over Largo.

QB Xavione Washington, Jr., Tampa Bay Tech: Accounted for 356 yards (294 passing, 62 rushing) and threw for two touchdowns in a win over Largo.

Palmetto 41, Wiregrass Ranch 6

The Bulls were held to their lowest point total of the season and had their most lopsided of the year in the first round of the playoffs.

Prime time performers

QB Rocco Becht, Sr., Wiregrass Ranch: Threw for 161 yards and a touchdown in a loss to Palmetto.

RB Corneil McCrary, Sr., Wiregrass Ranch: Ran for 42 yards on offense and picked off a pass on defense in a loss to Palmetto.

WR Bryson Rodgers, Jr., Wiregrass Ranch: Had two catches for 41 yards and a touchdown in a loss to Palmetto.

Lehigh Acres Lehigh 27, Gaither 0

One quarter was the difference. Lehigh scored all 27 points in the second quarter to build a commanding lead. The Cowboys were unable to recover and were shutout for the first time this season.

Wharton 15, Mitchell 8

In one of the best matchups of the first round, the Wildcats scored the go-ahead touchdown in the fourth quarter to take the lead for good in this defensive slugfest. It was the first time Wharton won a playoff game since 2008.

Prime time performers

ATH Arkese Parks, So., Wharton: Ran for more than 130 yards and scored both of the Wildcats touchdowns on the ground, including the winner in the fourth quarter.

LB Booker Pickett Jr., So., Wharton: Applied constant pressure from the outside to Mitchell’s passing game in check.

QB Ethan Rice, Sr., Mitchell: Scored the Mustangs’ lone touchdown on a 16-yard run and threw a pass for a two-point conversion in a loss to Wharton.

Friday’s region semifinal schedule

Palmetto at Tampa Bay Tech, 7:30

Wharton at Lehigh Acres Lehigh, 7:30

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Football: Friday night scoreboard

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Region finals

Class 7A

Half Tampa Bay Tech 14, Wharton 6

Class 6A

2nd Q Jesuit 14, Hillsborough 0

Class 5A

Half Clearwater 6, Sebring 0

Class 4A

2nd Q Clewiston 0, Lakewood 0

Class 3A

Half Berkeley Prep 21, Clearwater Central Catholic 10

Class 2A

2nd Q Orlando Christian Prep 12, Zephyrhills Christian 0

2nd Q Naples First Baptist 28, Northside Christian 0

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Football

Friday football forecast — Nov. 26

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Region finals

Class 7A

Wharton (9-2) at Tampa Bay Tech (12-0), 7:30

For preview of the game click here

Fans’ pick: Tampa Bay Tech (69 percent/49 votes)

Putnam’s prediction: Tampa Bay Tech 21-20

Class 6A

Hillsborough (10-2) at Jesuit (12-0), 7:30

For preview of the game click here.

Fans’ pick: Jesuit (73 percent/52 votes)

Putnam’s prediction: Jesuit 21-7

Class 5A

Sebring (8-3) at Clearwater (11-1), 7:30

For preview of the game click here.

Fans’ pick: Clearwater (76 percent/54 votes)

Putnam’s prediction: Clearwater 28-21

Class 4A

Clewiston (8-2) at Lakewood (10-2), 7:30

For preview of the game click here.

Fans’ pick: Lakewood (89 percent/63 votes)

Putnam’s prediction: Lakewood 22-17

Class 3A

Clearwater Central Catholic (8-3) at Berkeley Prep (10-0), 7:30

For preview of the game click here.

Fans’ pick: Berkeley Prep (75 percent/53 votes)

Putnam’s prediction: Berkeley Prep 28-24

Class 2A

Zephyrhills Christian (9-2) at Orlando Christian Prep (9-1), 7:30

For preview of the game click here.

Fans’ pick: Zephyrhills Christian (58 percent/41 votes)

Putnam’s prediction: Zephyrhills Christian 21-19

Northside Christian (7-2) at Naples First Baptist (9-1), 7:30

For preview of the game click here.

Fans’ pick: Northside Christian (66 percent/47 votes)

Putnam’s prediction: Naples First Baptist 35-21

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Football: Wharton at Tampa Bay Tech preview

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7A region final

Wharton (9-2) at Tampa Bay Tech (12-0), 7:30

This is a rematch from a regular season game the Titans won 21-12. That win not only clinched the district title for Tampa Bay Tech but also helped the program go undefeated in the regular season for the first time. The Titans schedule included nine games against teams that made the playoffs. Playing — and beating — such tough competition is the reason why Tampa Bay Tech earned the top overall seed in 7A based on RPI rankings.  The offense has displayed some nice balance with more than 2,000 yards rushing and passing this season. Quarterback Xavione Washington, a transfer from Tampa Catholic, took over as the starter and had played well down the stretch, throwing for 15 touchdowns and just two interceptions the last seven games. Defensively, the Titans are led up front with a furious pass rush that has recorded 38 sacks this season. The Wildcats are road warriors. They have won all road the past two seasons under coach Mike Williams, including two straight in the playoffs so far to reach the region final. Wharton’s strength is its defense, which has allowed just 93 points all season and has posted four shutouts. Last week, the Wildcats stymied Lehigh’s five-star running back Richard Young, who held to his lowest rushing total of the season. Wharton’s defensive playmakers also have a knack for finding the end zone once they get their hands on the ball. The Wildcats have scored a whopping 12 defensive touchdowns this season (five fumble returns, seven interception returns). 

Stat leaders

CategoryWhartonTampa Bay Tech
Passing yardsCarson Mohler, 947 (10 TDs, 5 INTs)Xavione Washington, 1,932 (19 TDs, 7 INTs)
Rushing yardsArkese Parks, 570 yards (7 TDs)James Evans, 917 yards (14 TDs)
Receiving yardsJason Cornwall, 227 (2 TDs)Greg Gaines III, 741 yards (9 TDs)
TacklesCameron Campbell, 92Ed Gwinn, 78
SacksBooker Pickett Jr., 19Keyon Clark, 15
InterceptionsTwo players tied with four. Two players tied with three.
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