Events Calendar

Current Weather

Manatee Road Watch


Personal Assistant Bills Discount Center - New & used Furnature, Appliances and More!

The Bradenton Times Polls

Poll Question: Who Are You Supporting in the Florida Governor's Race?

 Charlie Crist  Rick Scott  Adrian Wyllie More polls »

Right Column CR 2 Banner Ad

Home
Change Text Size: Larger  Smaller

News Section: Sports



Aquinas Upsets Manatee to Derail National Championship Run

Published Saturday, December 8, 2012 12:10 am

FT. LAUDERDALE – The last time a Florida team had beaten a Cord Sandberg-led Manatee football team was back in 2010, when St. Thomas Aquinas routed the 13-0 Hurricane squad that was ranked No. 2 in the nation by ESPN. On Friday night, Manatee returned to Brian Piccolo Stadium in Ft. Lauderdale. Again they were undefeated, and this time they were ranked No. 1 in the country by all three prep polls, yet once again the Raiders would prevail.

Manatee once more started slow, jumping out to a 3-0 lead late in the first quarter, before Aquinas answered with a touchdown. In the second quarter, Houston-bound St. Thomas QB John O'Korn began to find his rhythm, picking apart the Manatee defense and leading another scoring drive. The Raiders offensive line managed to consistently contain a Hurricane D-line that was considered to be the best in the nation.

clientuploads/Football12/StThomas.gif
St. Thomas Aquinas 35
https://www.thebradentontimes.com/clientuploads/Football/manateehelmet.gif
Manatee High 18

On the other side of the ball, St. Thomas also won the trench war, getting consistent penetration and minimizing the impact of Manatee QB Cord Sandberg, who struggled through the first half, before getting in sync later in the game, though not enough to turn the tide.

At the end of the day, the Manatee defense simply wasn't able to stop the momentum of a disciplined and consistent offense that dominated time of possession, while managing to convert in several pivotal third-down situations. St. Thomas Aquinas was able to run the ball at will, rushing for 304 yards to Manatee's 61, which allowed them to pass at leisure, without taking any unnecessary chances.

Nothing about the Raiders' performance was the sort of flashy, highlight reel stuff you'd expect to see in a win over a team like Manatee, which was perhaps the most impressive aspect – St. Thomas made it look almost effortless, as if they were running plays against their own second team. Manatee looked nothing like the dominant squad that routed undefeated Ft. Pierce Central 51-0 last week, and conversely, St. Thomas looked nothing like a team that could have lost to Miramar, who Manatee annihilated in the season opener.

The Raiders' defense took away Kinnan's vaunted spread option, and the Manatee O-line was simply unable to give Sandberg enough time to look to get the ball down field. RB Trevon Walters struggled with an injured ankle and left the game in the 4th quarter. Freshman Johnny Lang continued to impress in his place, but the 'Canes still weren't able to find the big plays needed to close the gap, never regaining the lead after their initial field goal, in a game that ended 35-18.

In the second, DE Blake Keller picked up a fumble and took it all the way to the St. Thomas 11, but the 'Canes failed to capitalize. It was that rugged stance by the St. Thomas D that seemed to reset the tone for the game and Manatee never regained the upper hand in momentum.

The loss ends an epic run in which Manatee entered the season ranked No. 1 in the nation, averaging nearly 52 points a game in their 13 victories. There will be no mythical national title, no back to back state championships, but still, no one can take away the incredible accomplishment that this class of Hurricanes have managed, or deny the thrilling excitement they gave fans in 2012.

Manatee loses a host of key players to graduation, including at least five who are expected to go on to play big-time college football next season. Yet needless to say, the 'Canes, who return such standouts as Demarcus Christmas, Trevon Walters, Johnny Lang, Raland Brewer and Marquel Hines will be back in the hunt in 2013. If they've entered the realm where a 13-1 season and a regional title is a disappointment, then that's only further proof of the level of excellence they've attained.

 

related:

Manatee Alum Ace Sanders Named to All-SEC Team

Join the conversation post Facebook comments here or on our site at the bottom of article.

 

  In Addition to Facebook Comments You Can Also Post Comments Below



Non-Facebook Comments:


Regarding the two St. Thomas losses I feel a summary might be enlightening. St. Thomas lost to Miramar and played poorly throughout the game. Nevertheless, anyone attending the game or viewing the game tape realizes that on the last play of the game the Miramar running back was stopped on the half-yard line. Miramar was given the touchdown but the call was a travesty. Regardless, St. Thomas should never have put themselves in the position where the game was that close. Their other loss was to Don Bosco, a program Manatee knows well. St. Thomas dominated throughout but lost, and Bosco deserves all the credit. Special team blunders doomed St. Thomas. Bosco had a total of 117 yards on offense; St. Thomas well over 300. But St. Thomas simply did not get it done. Manatee ran into the St. Thomas that everyone nationwide knows - and when St. Thomas is playing its best football it has a way of making other excellent programs look like JV teams. That's what happened last Friday night. If the Raiders stay sharp Tallahassee Lincoln will run into a juggernaught. Cheers, and Congrat's on a great season. We look forward to seeing you again next year.
Posted by L Story Rowe on December 9, 2012
 

Click here to add a Non-Facebook comment to this page




 Sign up for our free news subscription - a great way to stay informed!



News World Round UpSports Roundup

Manatee Rural Health Certificate
 


Obituaries

Name Date
Veleta Spann October 15, 2014
Josephine Lupoli October 18, 2014
Dimitrios Sokos October 19, 2004
Gary Richelieu October 16, 2004
Aline Funk October 17, 2014
Alice Szakacs October 16, 2014
Deborah Snyder October 20, 2014
Donald Moen October 4, 2014
Edward Dey October 1, 2014
All Obituaries






Copyright © 2009 - 2014 | The Bradenton Times | More than just an Online Newspaper | http://www.thebradentontimes.com/
405 26 Avenue Bradenton, FL 34205
Phone: 941-896-7857 - Privacy Policy - RSS Feed
Template provided by Free CSS Templates