MARTIN COUNTY — Martin County scored 30 unanswered points to erase a 14-3 Okeechobee lead as the Tigers routed the Brahmans 33-14 on Saturday morning.
The game was postponed Friday after a thunderstorm hit the Treasure Coast which cancelled every football scheduled in the area.
Okeechobee was held to only 50 yards in offense in the second half.
The Brahmans played well in the first 20 minutes. Lamar Williams capped a 12 play 68 yard drive with a 23 yard touchdown run in the first quarter.
Bubba Fludd broke loose for a 78 yard touchdown run in the second quarter.
After that play it was all Martin County. An interception by Tristan Simmons appeared to change the momentum for Martin County (3-0) with three minutes left in the half.
Simmons scored on a two yard run three plays later to make it 14-10. A 23 yard punt return gave the Tigers great field position again one minute later and freshman QB George Johnson directed a four play 39 yard drive for another score as the Tigers went up at halftime 16-14.
Johnson said he felt awesome about how his team played, “Everybody played together and we played to win. When we fell behind I just stayed calm because we’ll come back. I don’t worry about the score board we just play our game.”
Martin County Coach Chuck Kenyon agreed that the interception changed everything for his team.
“That was a momentum change. It seemed like after that we didn’t stop and we didn’t look back. We were a little flat at the beginning but adversity will bring that. We knew we had to weather the first few rounds because Okeechobee has some playmakers.”
Kenyon said his coaches made some slight adjustments in the defense at halftime which appeared to work well as Okeechobee managed just one first down in the second half.
“We didn’t change a lot and we knew what they would try to do for the most part. I think on both sides of the ball our team showed up just before halftime,” he noted.
Tiger place kicker Reese Skyler connected on two field goals of 47 and 21 yards in the game.
The Tigers added two touchdowns in the fourth quarter as they drove 55 yards in eight plays and scored on a 17 yard pass to Roderick Harris. Harris also scored on an eight yard run to cap a six play 48 yard drive to complete the scoring.
Brahman Coach Chris Branham said his team is dealing with injuries. He said the young players want opportunities to play but when they do they must step in and do the job.
He said some key penalties put his team in bad situations. “The turnover happens and it was some adversity our team hadn’t had to face. I didn’t like or appreciate how they responded to adversity.”
Branham said the Tigers got excited and rallied together late in the half and the Brahman game plan fell apart, “We missed blocks on offense and on defense we didn’t contain Johnson. He’s a fantastic athlete and leader and we let him get outside. He played as a freshman, as well as any senior I ever coached against.”
Branham said his team must rally together, can’t point fingers, and prepare well for their district opener on Friday at home against Sebastian River.
“We must stick together. If you’re good, you’re good as a team. We need to work hard this week because we have a tough district opponent,” he added.
Bubba Fludd had 91 yards rushing but only 20 yards passing. Lamar Williams had 94 yards on 21 carries for OHS. George Johnson had 91 yards rushing and Harris 73 yards rushing for the Tigers. The Tigers had two interceptions and only 25 yards in penalties. They converted (7-15) on third down and had 14 first downs. Brahmans with tackles for loss included Arthur Woodruff, Terrence Boswell, Juan Martinez, Caleb Smith, Evan Neal and Fred Bradley. Jajuan Cherry knocked away a possible touchdown pass. Alex Garcia left the game with an injury.
Charles M. Murphy is a staff writer for the Okeechobee News