Broncos Withstand Late Sem Ridge Rally For Sixth-Straight Win

Seminole Ridge receiver Brandon Schabert is knocked out of bounds by Palm Beach Central’s Jesus Santiago.

The Palm Beach Central High School football team weathered two storms, an early rain delay and a late surge by Seminole Ridge High School to win their sixth-straight game of the season 27-14 on Friday, Oct. 12.

The Broncos (6-1, 2-0) scored enough early on to keep the game out of reach for the Hawks.

“[Rick] Casko is a hell of a coach, and he brought his team in prepared,” Palm Beach Central head coach Tino Ierulli said. “The week of practice was the best we’ve ever had, but I was disappointed in the way we played.”

The Broncos scored on an early C.J. Stewart touchdown to go ahead 7-0 before the weather delay. Once play resumed, Palm Beach Central capped a nine-play drive with a 30-yard Tanner Nairn field goal to extend the lead to 10-0 by the start of the second quarter.

The Hawks’ offense struggled through the first half. The Bronco defense pressured often. With seven minutes remaining in the first half, the Bronco defense forced a fumble, which led to an eventual two-yard touchdown run by Stewart for his second of the night. The score lifted the Broncos to 17-0. Palm Beach Central, determined to put the game out of reach, attempted an onside kick, but the Hawks were ready and recovered the ball.

The play put Seminole Ridge in good position with only half the field to work. Seminole Ridge (4-3, 0-2) drove into Bronco real estate, and in just three plays cut the margin to 17-7 with a short Corey Polk touchdown run.

The Broncos turned another Hawk turnover into points with seconds remaining in the first half. Nairn put up a 23-yard field goal to lift the Broncos to 20-7.

Palm Beach Central extended that lead after a Hawk personal foul, when quarterback Michael Moreland found receiver Bryan Robinson on a 54-yard touchdown pass. The score was now 27-7 in favor of the Broncos.

With the game slipping away from the Hawks, they shoved back. Opportunity struck when a Palm Beach Central special team miscue on a snap deep in their own red zone set up possession for Seminole Ridge at the 10-yard line. Hawk quarterback Kaimyn Castilla punched through for a one-yard touchdown run to make the score 27-14 with 9:27 left in the game.

The dramatic turn occurred when the Hawks recovered an onside kick immediately after that second touchdown. The play set up the Hawks with half of the field to navigate to make it a one-score game. The nail-biting play for both sidelines was when Hawk receiver Ty’Korian Brown split the Bronco defenders deep and broke open for a would-be touchdown. However, as an extended Brown reeled in the pass, he could not control the ball as he collided with the turf.

The Broncos were able to secure the 27-14 victory and remain unbeaten at home and in district play. Eight sacks on the night from the Bronco defense and two forced turnovers made it difficult for Seminole Ridge. The Hawks dropped their third straight after going unbeaten 4-0 to start the season.

“This is no doubt the biggest and fastest team we’ve faced all year,” Seminole Ridge head coach Rick Casko said. “I’m just really proud of our kids and the way they played. They hung in there.”

Bronco quarterbacks Michael Moreland and Anarjahe Douriet combined for more than 200 yards and a touchdown. Robinson is credited with four receptions for 79 yards and a touchdown. Stewart totaled two scores, while Griffin Lampton led the Bronco defense with nine tackles, four for a loss, and four sacks. Janil Brown recorded eight tackles.

The Broncos will be on the road Friday, Oct. 19 to continue district play against Jupiter High School, while Seminole Ridge will host Pahokee. Both games are at 6 p.m.