A late defensive stand by Windermere Prep was the difference between victory and defeat in the Lakers’ 14-13 win over Legacy Charter in the opening round of the SSAC playoffs Friday, Nov. 6.
Down 14-0 midway through the fourth quarter, the Eagles (6-4) creeped back into the game when quarterback Jayden Colon hit Adonis Stewart on a pass that put Legacy at the Lakers’ 1-yard line. A play later and running back Jaden Oyola was in the end zone to help cut the Laker lead to 14-7 with 5:26 left in the game.
Fast forward minutes later, and it would be Colon running the ball in for a 10-yard touchdown with 33.4 seconds to go to put the Eagles within one point. With the grind of the game and tired legs on both sides, Legacy head coach Trent Hopper decided to go for the two-point conversion, which came in the form of an attempted run by Colon that was stuffed almost immediately.
The Eagles would try an onside kick after the failed attempt, but the Lakers (4-3) would recover and run out the clock in a game that was one of Windermere Prep’s toughest games of the season.
“We haven't been in hard-fought game all season, and I’m really proud of how our kids fought,” said Lakers head coach Jacob Doss. “Obviously we made some really bonehead plays — we had four freshman on the defense at a time and a couple of silly offensive mistakes that we made — but I’ll tell you what, that Legacy team is really good and they played really, really hard.”
The game itself was defined mostly by defense and penalties, as both offenses struggled throughout the night.
After a scoreless first quarter, Windermere Prep finally got on the board after a relatively easy drive downfield that concluded with quarterback Zane Fullmer connecting with Kaden Lucas on a 3-yard toss. The two-point conversion would fail, but the score gave the Lakers the 6-0 lead with 9:20 left in the first half.
Later, in the third quarter, Fullmer would pick up his second touchdown of the night with a 9-yard pass to Mason Williams. Fullmer would follow up the toss with a successful run to convert the two-point conversion to give the Lakers the 14-0 lead.
Fullmer would finish the game with those two touchdowns and 151-passing yard on 17-of-27 passing. Meanwhile Williams would finish with nine receptions for 93 yards and a touchdown, while Jackson Bennet led the team in the run game with 71 yards on 11 carries.
While the Eagles’ season is now over, the Lakers will ready for next week’s home playoff matchup with Bishop McLaughlin Catholic (4-3).
“They’re going to be ready and well coached … we have to come ready to play, period — I don't think we really, mentally, were tonight and we have to be mentally better,” Doss said. “We have the chance to play two more games total now, so were excited to go give it our all for those last two.”