(12) Deerfield Beach (7-2) vs. (20) Western (7-2)
Friday at Deerfield Beach, 7:30 p.m. – Region 3-8A Regional Quarterfinals
Here’s a game that I can’t shake the feeling will be a lot closer than a lot of people think.READ MORE: Parkland Activist Dad Fred Guttenberg Joins Anti-Gun Group
Deerfield Beach losing to Cardinal Gibbons in the season finale was worthy of the eyes emoji. Not taking anything away from Gibbons – I think the Chiefs are a very good team – but you’d think a team like the Bucks, who some are still picking to make it to Orlando in Class 8A, would be able to fair a lot better than what they did.
Still, Deerfield is one of the most talented teams in the state and they’ll have at least half of the 10 best players on the field in every game; so I expected much better.
Western is a team that I’ve kept an eye on all season. The Wildcats earned their spot on the bracket with a big win over Miramar and showed that they have a tough squad – both mentally and physically.
Looking at this matchup, Western has the ingredients to make this a close game. Specifically speaking, the Wildcats have a pair pass rushers – Matthew Hanson and Kevin Oliver – that will be able to put pressure on Bucks quarterback Nick Holm.READ MORE: Keep An Eye Out For Fake GoFundMe Scams Claiming To Help Fallen Officer Yandy Chirino
Putting pressure on Holm gets Deerfield’s offense out of sync. Once the Bucks see that Hanson and Oliver are too good to keep out of the backfield, they’ll start using the short lateral passing game – almost serving as long handoff runs – to receivers Jerry Jeudy, Leroy Henley and Daewood Davis.
The two things that will lift Deerfield Beach to a victory will be the fact that its receivers should be able to turn short passes into long gains and the Bucks defense should be able to use its athleticism to keep Western’s deceptively spry quarterback Harrison Story in check and stymie the Wildcats’ offense.
Bucks move on, but Western won’t go down without a fight.
Bald Prediction = Deerfield Beach wins 22-17MORE NEWS: Supply Chain Issues: 'There Really Are Problems Everywhere,' Even For Small Companies