LARGO - Largo defensive back Jason Wine's interception of a Dunedin pass in double overtime set up Brynn Harvey's 5-yard plunge to give the Packers a 37-31 win Friday in a game that featured solid play and gritty comebacks by players on both sides of the field from two of Pinellas County's top teams.
'I thought this would be a close game, but I thought it would be 12-10 or something like that,' Dunedin coach Mark Everett said.
'Both offenses were on and both defenses had an off night,' Largo coach Rick Rodriguez said.
When Largo quarterback Leonard Johnson scored from 26 yards out on a keeper to put the Packers (4-0) up 24-21 with 4:50 left in the third, it was just a matter of time before Dunedin (3-2) answered, as the Falcons did all night.
The Falcons responded with a Malcolm Durham 35-yard field goal with 6:13 remaining to tie the game at 24.
But just when it appeared Largo would take the ball with a game-winning drive, disaster appeared to strike. Needing 1 yard on third down on the Dunedin 46 with 4:26 left, Johnson had a snap sail over his head. He pounced on the ball on the Packers 37 and injured his right ankle, forcing him to leave the game.
Dunedin couldn't capitalize on the ensuing possession, and the game went to overtime.
Harvey scored from 3 yards out for the overtime's first score and Dunedin's Adarius Bellamy hit a 10-yard score on the Falcons' first play in OT.
In a duel of star running backs, Bellamy got the best of Harvey with 180 yards and two touchdowns to Harvey's 76 yards and two scores.
CLEARWATER 15, GIBBS 7: In a game full of hard hits and defensive stops by both teams, Clearwater prevailed. Clearwater was led by senior quarterback Luke Loucks, who completed 14 of 18 attempts for 156 yards and rushed for 17 yards in the victory.
The first touchdown wasn't scored until the third quarter, by Gibbs' Devon McCullough on a 1-yard run. Clearwater answered back with a touchdown by Joe Marshall midway in the third quarter. Marshall normally plays on the defensive line, but he showed his athleticism and played tailback for a 6-yard touchdown that put Clearwater up 15-7.
FORT MEADE 21, CLEARWATER CENTRAL CATHOLIC 3: Fort Meade overcame a 3-0 first-quarter deficit to down the Marauders.
The Marauders scored first on a 52-yard field goal by senior Jeff Ijjas. But the Miners took the lead for good in the second quarter on a touchdown by Tamorris Grace.
Grace scored a second touchdown in the third, and freshman LaKevin Camp scored in the fourth. Miners senior Onterio McCalebb and junior Rumeal Carlton had more than 70 yards rushing and passing.
BOCA CIEGA 26, ST. PETERSBURG 0: Boca Ciega spoiled St. Petersburg's Senior Night at Stewart Field as the Green Devils suffered a shutout loss to remain winless.
The Green Devils held the Pirates through a scoreless first quarter, but then quarterback Orhian Johnson showed why he is being recruited by Ohio State as he led the Pirates to 26 unanswered points.
Johnson threw one touchdown pass in the second, third and fourth quarters. Pirates kicker Randall Klafter was good on a 40-yard field goal with seven minutes left, and Boca Ciega's final two points came at the horn as a bad snap to Green Devils quarterback Robert Lemon sailed to his own 1-yard-line and was booted for a safety.
OSCEOLA 43, SEMINOLE 7: Cameron Cabarris led the Warriors (1-3) with seven carries for 136 yards in the victory.
Osceola scored 29 points in the first quarter and running back Edwin McKinney rushed six times for 108 yards. Junior quarterback Dylan Lantz completed two passes for 83 yards.
EAST LAKE 28, PINELLAS PARK 13: With a run-heavy power offense orchestrated by quarterback Blake Robles, running back Micah Powell and fullback Erin Murray drove up the middle of the Patriots defense all night. Touchdown runs by Powell and running back Richie Bailey led the Eagles into the second half.
Interceptions by Eagles defensive backs Nick Flowers and Alex Klier ended any drives the Patriots had going in the third and fourth quarters, respectively. Robles ran it in for a 9-yard touchdown to start the second half. Receiver Jacob Rachel's touchdown ended the Eagles' four-TD night.
COUNTRYSIDE 21, TARPON SPRINGS 14: The host Cougars took a 21-7 lead in the third quarter on a 2-yard run by Dawrence Roberts and hung on for an upset win against previously undefeated Tarpon Springs.
'That was a big win for us because Tarpon Springs is a good football team.' Countryside coach John Davis said.
After a tough district loss to Dunedin last week, Davis wasn't sure how his young team would respond. He pleasantly found out.
'We are so young and inexperienced you worry about losing to your rival Dunedin one week and if that will carry over the next or will the players put it behind them?' Davis said. 'I'm more proud that this was a team victory. There was no selfishness. The defense played great; the offense played great.'
The Cougars jumped to a 14-0 first-quarter lead on a 5-yard catch by Martavious Jones from quarterback Ryan Eppes and later a 9-yard run by Maurice Threatts.
The Spongers pulled within a touchdown when quarterback Danny Reyes plunged in from 2 yards but Countryside held the rest of the way.
DIXIE HOLLINS 37, PALM HARBOR UNIVERSITY 34: Jermeil Douse's 31-yard catch from Josh Brown proved to be the difference in the fourth quarter as the visiting Rebels rallied for a win, Dixie Hollins' first win of the season. Dajuan Bush's 18-yard touchdown run looked as if it may have put the host Hurricanes up for good until Douse and Brown answered.
NORTHSIDE CHRISTIAN 35, FIRST ACADEMY 12: David Edwards tossed a 24-yard pass to Benjamin Kaylor and later ran in a touchdown from 19 yards to put the Mustangs back in the win column. Edwards' touchdown pass was one of three Mustangs touchdown passes thrown by three players. Tyler Stowell hit Lewis Price from 10 yards and Drew Phillips connected with Kaylor from 61 yards, Kaylor's second touchdown catch of the night.
HOLLYWOOD CHRISTIAN 37, INDIAN ROCKS CHRISTIAN 14: Visiting Hollywood Christian scored 24 points in the second quarter and pulled away.