Mainland dominated West Broward with a 35-0 win in its second game of the season on Friday, Sept. 1.
“Obviously, we were a little slowish coming out because we won a big-time game against DeLand — we put a lot of energy into that,” Mainland head coach Travis Roland said. “The kids played a good clean game, even when things got chippy, staying true to the Buc way, which is playing disciplined football.”
Cornerback Zavier Mincey snagged a pick six in the first minute of the game followed by an extra point by Jacob Gettman, jumpstarting the Bucs with a 7-0 lead. Mainland’s defense did not let up with tackles for loss led by linebacker Myron Shafer, linebacker Christian Hudson and defensive end L.J. McCray who also had a sack in the first quarter.
Junior Myron Shafer said his teammates knew the game was going to be brutal. Since the Bucs are the “top dogs” in the area, other teams are going to be aggressive and attempt to throw them off their game. In the third quarter, “Oh, it did get rough,” he said. “They were just trying to fight because they knew we were the better team. That’s the only way they knew how to retaliate — not between the lines but after the whistle.”
After a Bobcat took a swing at one at a Mainland player, Shafer said he got close and told his teammate that this is not us, this is not Mainland football.
“Mainland is about playing between the lines,” he said. “After the whistle, they can have that because we know we are the better team.”
Obviously, we were a little slowish coming out because we won a big-time game against DeLand — we put a lot of energy into that. The kids played a good clean game, even when things got chippy, staying true to the Buc way which is playing disciplined football."
— TRAVIS ROLAND, Mainland head football coach
Receiver Elyjah Gilyard returned a punt to the Bobcats’ 28-yard line after Mainland’s defense shut down West Broward on third down. Rodney Hill took the snap and bulldozed his way into the end zone, bringing the score to 14-0.
As the game progressed, the Bobcats continued to aggressively attack the Buccaneers. An official threw a flag as Roland stormed the field following what he believed was a late tackle.
“We are going to kick off like seven times tonight,” he said. “Please watch the tackle.”
Kicker Gettman sandwiched Khamani Robinson’s touchdown with two successful field goals of 42 and 44 yards, respectively, before the half.
Mainland returned to the field ahead 27-0 as some of the younger Buccaneers took the stage. Safety Jhavin “Bubba” Westbrook was put in at quarterback later in the game.
“My favorite play would probably be when I was at quarterback,” he said. “I had pulled and ran up the middle for a 10-yard gain.”
He said it just felt good playing in front of all the people and is proud of his team for remaining focused through the aggression.
“They felt like just because we were winning, they had to be more aggressive with us and try and get in our heads,” he said. “We made sure to keep our composure and keep our minds on the game.”
The Buccaneers wrapped up the game with a 21-yard touchdown pass to Marquis McCants in the third quarter bringing the final to 35-0.
Mainland has an away game against Bartram Trail on Friday, Sept. 8. The 17-3 loss against the Bears last season is a definite motivator for the Bucs.
“They have a good QB — a power-five quarterback, a good running back and a good O-line, so we have to play physical and fast and watch a lot of film to make sure we know who we have,” Shafer said.