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FOOTBALL: East Lake caps first 10-0 regular season

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Published:   |   Updated: November 9, 2013 at 12:46 AM

ST. PETERSBURG — East Lake completed its first-ever 10-0 regular season in style Friday night, blasting St. Petersburg 54-0.

“These guys made history tonight,” Eagles coach Bob Hudson said of the perfect season. “The school's been there for 27 years and I told them in the locker room that they're the first ones to ever wear these uniforms and have that opportunity.”

In getting to its pristine 10-0 record, East Lake won games by an average score of 47-6. Friday's shutout was the defense's fourth on the year.

Any questions of whether 10-0 was important for an East Lake team with far greater aspirations were answered early Friday. A 47-yard Jake Hudson-to-George Campbell hookup during the game's opening drive led to a 6-yard Weston Fordham touchdown. It was the first of three scores for Fordham, who's now up to 17 on the year.

“We knew at the beginning of the season that this team could go 10-0,” said safety Devin Abraham. “We knew this team was special if we just put all our minds together. To get the undefeated season is a great feeling.”

Scoring is something plenty of Eagles partook in Friday night, and in a variety of fashions. East Lake scored five touchdowns on offense, one on defense and one on special teams. The Eagles also got a special-teams safety and a 47-yard field goal from Daniel LaCamera.

The special teams touchdown came courtesy of an Abraham blocked punt, his third in two games. Hunter Snyder scooped up the loose ball and ran it in from five yards out to put East Lake up 21-0 at the time.

Truly leading the Eagles, though, was a suffocating defense that held St. Pete (6-4) to minus-8 yards in the first half and 38 for the game. East Lake recorded three sacks and three turnovers, scoring 16 total points off of those takeaways.

Abraham, who pilots the defense from his safety position, turned in another impactful performance. The USF commit ran a second-quarter fake punt 40 yards to the St. Pete 1, setting up Fordham's second touchdown run. Shortly after that long run, Abraham delivered one of the night's biggest hits that broke up a first-down reception.

“Abraham is having a lot of fun, he trusts the guys around him and that's what's key,” Coach Hudson said of his star defensive back.

East Lake put up 314 yards of total offense and had its starters out after two quarters of work. Jake Hudson completed 5 of 10 passing for 142 yards, including a 53-yard touchdown to wide-open Artavis Scott that put East Lake up 37-0 heading into halftime.

With the dogs called off in the second half, East Lake capped the night's scoring with Fordham's booming 47-yard field goal, Noah Vazquez's 32-yard interception return and Tristan Zullo's 3-yard reception from Brandon Swift.

The Eagles now set their sights on next week's Class 7A region quarterfinal against visiting Palmetto High (5-5). The Tigers finished off the regular season with a 34-26 loss at Bradenton Southeast. Palmetto's led by running back Josh Hicks, a Rutgers commit.

SCORING:

EL - 7 – 30 – 10 – 7 --- 54

SP - 0 – 0 – 0 – 0 --- 0

EL – Fordham 6-yard run. PAT kick (LaCamera) – 1st Quarter (8:19)

EL – Fordham 1-yard run. PAT kick (LaCamera) – 1st Quarter (10:15)

EL – Snyder 5-yard blocked punt recovery. PAT kick (LaCamera) – 2nd Quarter (7:49)

EL – Safety – 2nd Quarter (6:46)

EL – Fordham 26-yard run. PAT kick (LaCamera) – 2nd Quarter (6:31)

EL – Scott 53-yard pass from Hudson. PAT kick (LaCamera) – 2nd Quarter (1:51)

EL – LaCamera 35-yard FG – 3rd Quarter (4:35)

EL – Vazquez 32-yard INT return. PAT kick (LaCamera) – 3rd Quarter (3:10)

EL – Zullo 3-yard pass from Swift. PAT kick (LaCamera) – 4th Quarter (4:10)

TEAM STATS:

-----------------------EL-------SP

First Downs---------13---------4

Atts./Rush Yds.---31-159----31-36

Comp./Atts./Int.---7-15-0----4-10-1

Passing Yds.--------155-------26

Total Offense------314-------38

Fumbles/Lost-------1-1-------3-2

Punts/Avg.---------2-41.0---6-29.0

Penalties----------5-55-------9-83

INDIVIDUAL LEADERS:

RUSHING

EL – Fordham (11-76, 3 TD), Abraham (1-40), Swift (4-21).

SP – Reaves (16-33), Causey (2-19).

PASSING

EL – Hudson (5-10 for 142, TD), Swift (2-5 for 13, TD).

SP – Tribolet (3-6 for 20).

RECEIVING

EL – Scott (3-81, TD), Campbell (2-61), Zullo (1-3, TD).

SP – Reaves (2-13), Miller (1-6), McTier (1-5).

ehorchy@suncoastnews.com

(727) 815-1071

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