The Pasco County prep football Top 5 is voted on by correspondents Steve Campbell, Mike Camunas, Chris Errington, Kyle LoJocano, Bart O’Connell, Kenny Sanders and Andy Villamarzo.
1. Land O’ Lakes, 64 points (5 first-place votes)
Last week: 16-0 win vs. Hudson
The Cobras held Land O’ Lakes’ high-tempo offense to no points and kept junior quarterback James Pensyl from throwing a touchdown, but the Gators still pulled out a win thanks to their defense. But expect Land O’ Lakes to get clicking again, especially if its running game, led by RB Larenz Scroggins who had 100 rushing yards last week, gets in sync with the pass game.
2. Sunlake, 60 points (2 first-place votes)
Last week: 30-0 win vs. Wesley Chapel
The Seahawks have allowed just 23 points and no touchdowns the past three games and now have four shutouts. Ben Wood, Zion Osborn and company must play their best this week against the Gators who boast the county’s best offense, Sunlake still leans heavily on RB Nathan Johnson, who leads the county in rushing and is approaching 1,000 yards.
3. Zephyrhills, 44 points
Last week: 37-16 win at Brooksville Nature Coast
The Bulldogs are on a mission. Coach Reggie Roberts, boasting his best team under his tenure at his alma mater, has his players ready to end the postseason drought, which dates back to 2006. With an impressive road win over the Sharks, the Bulldogs are poised to grab the 5A-6 runner up title — with one team standing its way: 9-Mile War rival Pasco.
4. Pasco, 22 points
Last week: 46-7 win at Weeki Wachee
The Pirates aren’t done and their upcoming 5A-6 opponents know it. Pasco proved it still can dominate and looked like its old self, especially behind Malik Johns who is carrying the offensive load with Nate Craig out. The Pirates must win this week if they hope to not miss the playoffs for the first time under coach Tom McHugh’s tenure.
5. Hudson, 16 points
Last week: 16-0 loss at Land O’ Lakes
The Cobras have two losses, both to bigger teams and schools. And in both those games, Hudson stayed competitive to the end. Coach Mark Kantor, who has revamped this team into a legitimate 5A-7 district title contender, knows playing those bigger teams will benefit the Cobras as they look to return to the postseason for the first time since 2009.
Also receiving votes: Anclote