Football: Boynton Beach 12, W. Boca Raton 10
Friday, October 10, 2008
by Chuck King
Before Friday night, Chuck Frederick never had been smothered on the bottom of a celebratory post-game pile. That he still was grinning 10 minutes after climbing out from under a mob of screaming teammates indicated the wait was worthwhile.
Frederick bobbled a 9-yard touchdown pass from Isaiah Howard before cradling the ball to his body as time expired, giving Boynton Beach a 12-10 District 14-4A win against West Boca Raton.
"The whole game I'd been saying 'Big players make big plays,' and I stepped up and made a play for my team," Frederick said.
Howard, who engineered the winning drive in the final 92 seconds, didn't have the angle to see Frederick secure Boynton Beach's first victory against West Boca.
"I saw him bobble it and I was like, 'Oh no, we lost,' " Howard said. "I didn't see him catch it, I just saw the back judge nodding his head up and down, saying he caught the ball."
Officials hit the Tigers with a 15-yard excessive-celebration penalty enforced on the extra point, which didn't matter because the Tigers took a knee rather than kick.
When Boynton's celebration carried into the post-game, West Boca Raton coach Willie Dodaro pulled his players away from the post-game handshake, sending them to the locker room. Dodaro declined a request for comment.
The Bulls' offense that had been dormant for almost 12 quarters came to life in the closing minutes, nearly delivering the Bulls a victory.
Trailing 6-3 late in the fourth quarter, the Bulls put together a seven-play, 90-yard drive to take a 10-6 lead. Marquis Jones caught John Blalock's pass in the right flat, sprinted down the sideline before cutting back between two defenders and diving the final 2 yards for a 45-yard touchdown.
The touchdown was the first time the Bulls found the end zone since a 21-0 victory against Lake Worth on Sept. 19.
All three of the game's touchdowns occurred after a 63-minute lightning delay that came with 3:58 remaining in the third quarter.
Boynton Beach took its first lead of the game on its initial possession following the delay. Howard's 2-yard swing pass to Josh Kelley capped the 40-yard drive.
The mistake-filled game featured three touchdowns that were called back because of penalties. Eddie Weal's 34-yard first-quarter punt return gave Boynton a first down at the West Boca 17-yard line. Three plays later, his 10-yard touchdown run was called back because of a holding penalty. Following another penalty, the Tigers ultimately punted.
West Boca Raton had two defensive touchdowns called back. A pass-interference penalty erased Eric Schaefer's 34-yard interception return for a touchdown in the second quarter. A personal-foul call negated Joseph Brehm's 38-yard fumble return early in the second half.