SFHSS TOP 15 - Week 5: Top Programs Now Face Key District Challenges

Larry Blustein
September 18, 2018 - 10:20 am

Larry Blustein

If any week illustrated how impressive the football teams are in south Florida, it was certainly this past week.

Of the 18 teams rated this past week, 16 of them won – including the top 14 – which not only shows that our ranking are accurate, but the fact that the competition is amazing and more than competitive.

With district play well under way, every game from now on will mean just about everything – and the competition level will be turned up quite a bit.

This is the time of year when college coaches are watching prospects who have the chance to showcase their many skills against top-flight opponents.

Here is a look at the top 15-plus as we head toward the fifth week:

1. Carol City Chiefs (6A – 3-0). In winning its opening district game, 36-7 against Norland, this impressive program continued to turn heads on both sides of the lne if scrimmage. 

THIS WEEK: Will take on Dr. Krop on Thursday, Sept. 20. NEXT WEEK: The district schedule continues with a meeting against Hialeah-Miami Lakes 

2. St. Thomas Aquinas Raiders (7A – 4-0). Once again, this loaded team jumped all over an outmanned Stranahan squad in soundly beating the Dragons. THIS WEEK: It’s the battle everyone has been waiting for – and perhaps the last real test this team will have when nationally rated Miami Central comes to Fort Lauderdale for a September 21 game. NEXT WEEK: With Deerfield Beach coming up on October 5, the Raiders will take the week off.

3. Deerfield Beach Bucks (8A – 4-0). In a game that saw standout Denard Robinson have his jersey retired, this team again showed why they may be the strongest 8A program in Florida by beating rival Blanche Ely, 46-0. THIS WEEK: A trip to Coral Springs for the district opener on Friday, Sept. 21 at 7. NEXT WEEK: The district schedule continues with a trip to play Taravella on September 28.

4. Central Rockets (6A – 3-1). In rebounding from a tough loss on the road, this team rolled to an impressive 41-0 win over Edison. THIS WEEK: Everyone has been waiting for this meeting with national powerhouse St. Thomas Aquinas on Sept. 21 at 7. NEXT WEEK: Back to district play on Friday, September 27 with a game against Norland at 7.

5. American Heritage Patriots (5A – 3-1). Putting it all together on both sides of the ball, head coach Pat Surtain’s squad rolled to a convincing district win at Coconut Creek THIS WEEK: A trip to defending 3A state champion Chaminade-Madonna is on tap for September 21 at 7. NEXT WEEK: Back to district play with a home game against Stranahan on October 5 at 7.

6. Palmetto Panthers (8A - 3-0). One of the state’s most under the radar teams continues to win and do it impressively – with a convincing victory over Ferguson. THIS WEEK: A key non district matchup with much-improved Coral Gables on Thursday, September 21. NEXT WEEK: It’s the huge district meeting with Southridge on Friday, September 28.

7. Columbus Explorers (8A – 3-1). Coach Chris Merritt’s team bounced back with an exciting win over Booker T. Washington, 28-21. THIS WEEK: The district season opens with a meeting against Miami High on Sept. 27 at 7:30. NEXT WEEK: It’s a trip to Lakeland to finish the two-game series with Lake Gibson on Oct. 5.

8. Chaminade-Madonna Lions (3A – 3-1). One of the state’s best teams scored early and often against Northeast THIS WEEK: It’s the much anticipated matchup with the two-time defending 5A champion American Heritage Patriots at home at 7. NEXT WEEK: The Lions will continue this attractive first ever home night schedule with a contest against 8A Piper on Friday, September 28 at 7.

9. South Dade Bucs (8A – 4-0). In remaining undefeated, the Bucs rolled to a 27-7 win over rival Homestead – as they continue to showcase a quality program under head coach Nate Hudson. THIS WEEK: A very good matchup with Miami Jackson on September 21 at Curtis Park at 7:30. NEXT WEEK: A non-district trip to North Miami Beach for a 7:30 contest against the Chargers on October 5.

10. Plantation Colonels (8A – 3-0).  Coach Steve Davis and his team opened district play, avenging a 2017 loss to Miramar, 22-14 THIS WEEK: Another home district game against surprising Cypress Bay on September 21 at 7. NEXT WEEK: The home schedule continues with a district game against Flanagan on September 28 at 7.

11. Southridge Spartans (8A – 3-1).  Coach Sedrick Irvin’s squad got back on track after a loss to Booker T. Washington with a convincing district win against Miami Killian. THIS WEEK:  trip to the Space Coast for a meeting with 5A power Rockledge this Friday at 7. NEXT WEEK: District play continues with a huge matchup against Palmetto on Friday, September 28.

12. University School Sharks (4A – 4-0). Remaining perfect on the 2018 season, head coach Daniel Luque and his team rolled over Village Academy. THIS WEEK: A big 4A matchup with Miami Monsignor Pace on Sept. 21 at home. NEXT WEEK: Another home game for the undefeated Sharks on October 5 against Delray American Heritage at 7.

13. Northwestern Bulls (6A – 2-2). Coach Max Edwards and his team rebounded from consecutive losses with a convincing district win over Hialeah-Miami Lakes. THIS WEEK: It’s the annual meeting with Booker T. Washington on Friday, September 21.at 7:30. NEXT WEEK: A trip to national powerhouse, IMG, is on tap for Saturday, September 29 in Bradenton.

14. Cardinal Gibbons Chiefs (5A – 2-2). In answering the bell against previously unbeaten Miami Jackson, head coach Matt Dubuc’s team is now back on track in the district THIS WEEK: A trip to play 8A Douglas on September 21 will keep this team sharp down the stretch. NEXT WEEK: It’s back to district play with a home game against Coconut Creek on September 28 at 7. 

15. Hollywood McArthur Mustangs (7A, 4-0). In rolling over district rival South Broward, 35-6, head coach Pierre Senatus and his team made a huge push for a district playoff position. THIS WEEK: Perhaps the only challenge that remains in district play – will be this week when this team travels to Nova for a September 21 contest. NEXT WEEK: A September 28 game at home against Southwest Ranches Archbishop McCarthy at 7. 

PHOTO COURTESY OF DEERFIELD BEACH FOOTBALL

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