Mainland advances to second round of the playoffs; Matanzas football season ends with first-round loss

The Bucs scored nine touchdowns in rout of Satellite; Lincoln's defense stifled the Pirates.

Mainland quarterback Dennis Murray (14) leads his teammates onto the field before the Buccaneers' homecoming game earlier this season. File photo by Michele Meyers
Mainland quarterback Dennis Murray (14) leads his teammates onto the field before the Buccaneers' homecoming game earlier this season. File photo by Michele Meyers
Photo by Michele Meyers
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Dennis Murray threw three touchdown passes and Mainland High dominated every phase of the game in thrashing Satellite 62-0 in a Region 3-3S football quarterfinal Nov. 10 at Daytona Stadium.

It was the first step in the Bucs’ quest to return to the Class 3S state championship. The Bucs lost to Lake Wales 32-30 in last year’s title game. They are three wins away from returning to the final.

Mainland (10-1) hosts Rockledge at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 17, in a regional semifinal at Daytona Stadium. Rockledge (6-5) defeated Jensen Beach 19-16 in its quarterfinal.

The Bucs rebounded from a 33-0 loss to Lake Mary in their regular-season finale. After suffering their first loss, they shut out their opponent for the sixth time this season.

Mainland’s defense forced three turnovers that set up touchdowns against Satellite (5-6). Zavier Mincey and David Hall each had interceptions. Ramon McCollough recovered a fumble.

Rodney Hill began the scoring barrage with four straight runs ending with a 2-yard touchdown scamper. After the Scorpions missed a field goal, Murray threw a 6-yard touchdown pass to Phillip Moore on the first play of the second quarter. The Bucs scored five more touchdowns in the quarter to take a resounding 48-0 halftime lead and force a running clock in the second half.

Murray threw 19-yard scoring passes to Marquis McCants and Tyree Weatherspoon. Corey Hill scored on two 1-yard runs. Khamani Robinson and Trell Edwards also ran for touchdowns.


Matanzas High’s winningest football season since 2016 ended with a 49-0 loss at Tallahassee Lincoln in the Region 1-3S quarterfinals on Nov.10.

The Pirates (7-4) could not get its offense moving against a Lincoln defense that gave up more than one touchdown just three times all season. Lincoln (9-2) held Matanzas to 29 yards, including just 7 yards rushing.

The Pirates’ defense kept them in the game in the first half as the Trojans headed into halftime with a 21-0 lead. But Lincoln added three more touchdowns in the third quarter to put the game away.

Christian Sims and Maliek Denmark each threw two touchdown passes. Jashawn Washington scored three touchdowns, including a 51-yard run and a 51-yard reception.

Matanzas coach Matt Forrest bid farewell to a senior class that came in with him in 2020 and helped shape the culture of the program.

The seniors dominated the stats this year. Next season, the Pirates will have to replace their top three tackle leaders in seniors Cole Hash, Jordan Mills, Zach O’Gwynn and Sho’Marion Gaines. Quarterback Dakwon Evans finished his senior season with over 2,000 total yards. He threw 13 touchdown passes and ran for seven more. Hash rushed for over 400 yards. Senior receivers Andre Andrews (35-for-493), Daniel DeFalco (18-for-341), Mills (23-for-335) and Hash (22-for-243) combined for over 1,400 receiving yards.

"When you're talking about losing that kind of prodcution, it's definitely going to be hard to do. Obviously, we're proud of this group." Forrest said. "But if the program is going in the right direction, you rebuild and go forward. We feel we can continue to be in the playoffs year in and year out with each group raising the bar."



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