MUSTANGS 44 FALCONS 8

TRINITY – Mitchell quarterback Ezra Brennan topped 300 yards for the first time in his prep career and receivers Johnny Fairbank and Elijah Hadley were happy to assist in the process.

The still-unbeaten Mustangs fell behind visiting Orlando East River 7-3 late in the first quarter before dominating the final three-plus periods of play. The Falcons never scored again, and Mitchell rattled off 41 unanswered points to reach the region semifinals for the fourth time in five years.

Next up for the Mustangs is a trip east to Apopka Wekiva. Also known as the Mustangs, Wekiva (6-3) blanked Kissimmee Tohopekaliga, 32-0. A win in that Class 7A semi would send Mitchell to its first-ever region final to face the winner of Orlando Edgewater (5-2) and Viera (5-3). Either opponent would get to host, despite the difference in record.

Back to Friday night.

One of Mitchell’s most dominating performances of the year saw the Mustangs rack up 457 yards of offense while limiting East River to 188. Leading 24-7 coming out of the halftime break, Mitchell allowed the Falcons to drive 62 yards on nine plays before forcing a turnover on downs.

East River gained just four more yards all night.

Brennan finished his career night 19 of 34 passing for 325 yards and three touchdowns, all to Fairbank. The senior receiver finished with a career-best 146 yards on six receptions. That included two touchdowns of over 40 yards.

Hadley is Brennan’s top deep threat and the two wasted no time showing off what they can do. On Mitchell’s first play from scrimmage, Brennan looked to Hadley on a midrange skinny post and the flashy playmaker snagged the ball out of the air with one hand and picked up a few more yards, gaining 25 on the play.

Hadley topped 100-yards for the first time, picking up 123 on six receptions.

Helping set up the aerial assault was another solid Mitchell rushing attack. The offensive line of Evan Brennan, Greg Washington, Gary Shepard, Dylan Bromberg and Devin Taylor controlled the trenches all night, allowing junior running back Andy Treto to pick up 87 yards and two touchdowns on 19 carries. Ezra Brennan added a rushing score to his three passing TDs, plunging up the middle from a yard out late in the second quarter.

Mitchell could have added a pick-6 to its scoring variety, but a penalty wiped out that opportunity. Senior cornerback Khamari Smith intercepted East River’s Nick Miner in the third quarter and took it about 60 yards to the house, but the officiating crew threw a flag on the return.

Smith’s teammates didn’t let the effort go to waste, but the Mustangs had to earn their next score. Penalties pushed possession all the way back to its own 25 and Mitchell ran 16 plays spanning into the fourth quarter to get its sixth and final score of the night – a 3-yard run by Treto.

SCORING:

ER - 7 – 0 – 0 – 0 --- 7

M - 10 – 14 – 14 – 6 --- 44

M – Howard 27-yard FG. – 1st Q (7:01)

ER – Miner 1-yard run. Kick (Mercia) – 1st Q (2:25)

M – Treto 3-yard run. Kick (Howard) – 1st Q (1:06)

M – Fairbank 12-yard pass from Brennan. Kick (Howard) – 2nd Q (9:28)

M – Brennan 1-yard run. Kick (Howard) – 2nd Q (2:07)

M – Fairbank 49-yard pass from Brennan. Kick (Howard) – 3rd Q (10:26)

M – Fairbank 47-yard pass from Brennan. Kick (Howard) – 3rd Q (2:26)

M – Treto 3-yard run. Kick failed. – 4th Q (6:48)

TEAM STATS:

----------------------ER------- M

First Downs----------10---------20

Atts./Rush Yds.---26-107----27-132

Comp./Atts./Int.---5-21-1----19-34-0

Passing Yds.--------81-------325

Net Yards----------188-------457

Punts-----------------5----------1

Penalties----------7-67-------9-105

INDIVIDUAL LEADERS:

RUSHING

ER – Holland (10-48), Coleman (9-44), Miner (5-5, TD).

M – Treto (19-87, 2 TD), Brennan (5-29, TD), Fairbank (1-13).

PASSING

ER – Miner (5-21 for 81, INT).

M – Brennan (19-34 for 325, 3 TD).

RECEIVING

ER – Holland (2-36), Rainey (1-27).

M – Fairbank (6-146, 3 TD), Hadley (6-123), Anderson (2-23).