American Heritage 33, Atlantic 28: Greg Bryant runs for 215 yards, 2 TDs in victory
Friday, September 02, 2011
by Matt Porter
Atlantic showed plenty of high-flying offense, but couldn't stop American Heritage's Greg Bryant.
The junior running back dazzled with 215 yards and two touchdowns on 18 carries, helping the Stallions run to a 19-point halftime lead and hold on for a 33-28 win in the first-ever meeting of the Delray Beach schools.
"We knew he was going to get his," Atlantic coach Chris Bean said.
When his team needed him most, Bryant came through, showing a blend of speed and power that makes him one of the top running backs in the state.
With Atlantic down 19-0 to start the second half thanks to touchdown runs from Bryant, senior Jeremy Gaskins and a 5-yard TD reception by Edwin Thomas, Eagles senior Brisly Estime took the opening kick 95 yards for a touchdown.
Near the end of the third quarter, junior A.J. Puente threw a 40-yard pass senior receiver Chad Ward, then hit Ward with a 5-yard TD pass to make it 19-14.
On the next drive, Bryant stutter-stepped and shook three defenders on his way to 26 yards. He followed that by carrying a host of Eagles with him across the goal-line for an 11-yard score.
The action became fast and furious from there as Atlantic kicked the passing game into high gear. Puente (17 of 34, 263 yards, 3 TDs) found sophomore Adly Enoicy for a 46-yard touchdown. The kick made it 26-21 Stallions with five minutes remaining.
The Stallions caught Atlantic flat-footed on a screen pass from quarterback Marcus Davis to Bryant that went for 40 yards. Davis then threw a 27-yard pass to Marcus Coby, who fumbled at the 2, but Thomas picked up the ball and scored.
Puente hit Enoicy (seven catches, 169 yards, 2 TDs) again, this time for 70 yards, and followed it up with a 2-yard score to pull Atlantic within 33-28 with 3:49 left.
The Eagles forced a punt and took over with 1:16 left, but a critical personal foul penalty put them deep inside their own territory, where the comeback died. The Eagles were flagged 14 times for 135 yards.
"We have some problems with penalties and defense," Bean said. "But we have plenty of offense. The penalties were the only thing I was disappointed over."
"Man, the offensive line did a good job," Bryant said, walking stiff-legged after the game because of cramps. "They just opened up big holes."
It wasn't just the offensive line's work, as much as Bryant wanted to deflect credit.
"The line gets him the first three yards," Stallions coach Doug Socha said. "He did everything after that. He's a spectacular player."