TAMPA — The good news for Sickles is the Gryphons looked impressive in a 48-6 rout of Gaither, a week after suffering their first loss of the season at Plant.
The bad news is junior running back Ray Ray McCloud III was knocked out of the game after suffering an injury to his right knee in the second quarter.
McCloud, who had 161 yards and two touchdowns before the injury, had his knee wrapped and propped up on the sideline throughout the rest of the game.
“I should be all right,” said McCloud, who has more than 1,300 rushing yards and 14 touchdowns this season.
The 5-foot-10, 174-pound back was instrumental in Sickles (6-1) taking a 21-0 lead by the end of the first quarter, with the Gryphons’ first two drives ending in touchdown runs by McCloud.
“He’s a big part of our offense, and he definitely makes my job easier,” said Sickles quarterback Isaac Holder, who passed for 109 yards on 9-of-12 passing and rushed for 40 yards on eight carries.
Holder scored on a 6-yard run on the Gryphons’ third series of the quarter.
In the second quarter, with Sickles facing third-and-18 on their 48-yard line, Holder pulled off a quarterback keeper and ran for 47 yards to set up a 2-yard touchdown run by Justin Harris to put Sickles ahead 28-0.
Gaither 0 0 6 0 — 6
Sickles 21 14 0 13 — 48
S — McCloud 6 run (Lezotte kick)
S — McCloud 2 run (Lezotte kick)
S — Holder 6 run (Lezotte kick)
S — Harris 2 run (Lezotte kick)
S — Levay 9 pass from Holder (Lezotte kick)
G — Suarez 5 run (kick failed)
S — FG Lezotte 22
S — FG Lezotte 50
S — Quintana 3 run (Lezotte kick)