The past six years, Mainland has advanced out of the first round of the FHSAA Playoffs. But each of the last four years, the Buccaneers were bounced by a team from Miami.
But going into Friday night's matchup with Miami Norland, Buccaneers defensive tackle Kevon McCrary wasn't too worried.
“They bleed just like me,” McCrary said. “They’re humans just like me. That’s our mindset. A Miami team, it’s just a name on their jersey.”
Turns out, he was right.
Battling cold, windy weather, No. 2 seed Mainland (7-3) took down No. 7 seed Miami Norland 21-12 on the night of Friday, Nov. 10, in the regional playoff opener at Daytona Beach Municipal Stadium. Senior quarterback Richard Kamara threw for 145 yards and a touchdown, and running back Demaurez Bellamy ran for two scores, including the game-clinching touchdown in the fourth quarter.
The Buccaneers got off to a rough start when the Vikings (6-4) scored first on an 8-minute drive in the opening quarter. Mainland got things going with a 55 yard touchdown pass from Kamara to wide receiver Tank Dell on their second drive of the game.
Norland out-gained Mainland 360-204 but only scored on one red zone trip.
The Buccaneers host Miami-Carroll City on Friday, Nov. 17.