Football Previews: Huge district matchups

Clearwater quarterback Rent Montie and the Tornadoes can take over sole possession of first place in the District 6A-9 standings with a win over Boca Ciega.

This week’s big one is Clearwater at Boca Ciega. The Pirates are this year’s surprise team in Pinellas County and are on a major roll. At this point – especially after dispatching Largo 40-14 – Bogie is the favorite to win the Class 6A District 9 title. East Lake and St. Petersburg can’t catch Pinellas Park in the District 7A-10 standings, but both need wins. They’ll go at it Friday. Fun week coming.

Clearwater (5-2, 3-0) at Boca Ciega (6-2, 3-0)

It’s hard to say there’s a hotter team, or offense, in Pinellas County than Boca Ciega. The Pirates began the year with an 0-2 record, losing at Lakewood and at Countryside. Since then, Bogie’s ran off six straight wins while averaging 44 points of offense per game.

Clearwater can score points, too. The Tornadoes roll in with a four-game winning streak and knowing they beat Bogie 30-0 last year.

If over-unders were set on high school football games, this might be one to take the over on. Points are going to be scored. Bogie’s sophomore quarterback TaffreyPeterman is lighting it up and running back Alfonso Franklin is already over 1,000 yards rushing.

Clearwater runs out plenty of weapons for quarterback Rent Montie to hand off too or hit with a pass. Qwe’shaun Perry, Latrez Bradley, Marquvion Jeter, Marcus Jeter, Keedrik Murray – playmakers all over the place.

East Lake (3-4, 1-1) at St. Petersburg (5-2, 2-1)

District championship hopes are dashed for both teams, but that doesn’t make this game any less important.

East Lake and St. Pete both need to keep racking up wins and points to try and sneak into the Class 7A playoffs as an at-large bid. For East Lake, this might be a do-or-die situation. Win and have a shot. Lose and it might be over.

St. Pete can D up and the Green Devils showed that last week by blanking Countryside, 14-0. If East Lake gets off to a slow start, can’t sustain drives and gets into a hole, it might be a tough night. St. Pete junior quarterback Tonio Shavers Jr. and his cast of weapons are capable of causing trouble.

Newsome (2-5, 1-3) at Palm Harbor University (2-5, 1-3)

PHU let one slip away last week at Alonso and has a tougher test this week with Newsome coming to town.

The Wolves may have an identical overall and district record than PHU, but they also somehow got their one victory over District 8A-6 frontrunner Sarasota Riverview two weeks ago.

Newsome backed up that huge upset by getting beat 45-17 last week at home against Steinbrenner. A week prior to the Sarasota Riverview win, Newsome lost to Hillsborough County’s Riverview – a team PHU beat 41-25.

This might be the most confusing game of the week.

PHU’s offense hasn’t cracked 20 points since its 41-25 win over Riverview in mid-September. The ’Canes will have to do better to beat Newsome.

Seminole (1-6, 0-3) at Countryside (4-3, 0-2)

Countryside’s coming off a tough 14-0 loss against St. Pete and will be looking to blow off a little steam.

Seminole is rebuilding and got its lone win against also-rebuilding Dunedin.

This will be a game for Countryside to get its game together going into next week’s showdown at Pinellas Park. The Patriots may have the district title sewn up, but the Cougars can pick up major points with a win.

Pinellas Park (7-0) at Dunedin (0-7)

Pinellas Park has established itself as the best public-school team in Pinellas County.

The Patriots are on their way to a perfect 10-0 regular season leading up to the playoffs. Getting by Dunedin won’t be much of an issue as they prepare for their last test next week against Countryside.

Friday night’s game will provide an opportunity for Pinellas Park stars Lawrence Toafili and Derek Bryant to pad their stats, thought. Toafili is already over 1,000 yards rushing and Bryant has racked up 1,124 yards of total offense.