Orlando Sentinel: Winter Park wins big over Lake Nona
by Chris Hays The Prospector
(See video of Coach Shifflet here and article page here)
Senior quarterback Cameron Legree threw two first-half touchdown passes and the Winter Park defense stifled the Lake Nona passing attack as the Wildcats rolled 42-3 in the season opener for both teams.
Legree was a big reason why Winter Park jumped out to a 35-0 lead at halftime, completing all six of his first half passes – two for touchdowns to Tyrone Davis and Cameron Brown – and adding 38 rushing yards to the offense.
“When you bring a team back from last year that was in the regional finals, the one key component you always look for is that quarterback and when you can bring your quarterback back, it helps a lot of those young guys pick up their game a lot faster,” Winter Park head coach Tim Shifflet said. “[Legree] is one of those leaders on the field. He can run it, he can throw it when needed. He’s proven that last year and again he had a heck of a football game for us. He’s one of my captains and I can’t be more proud of him.”
Couple Legree’s play and a balanced offensive attack with the play of the defense and Winter Park caused fits for Lake Nona all night. Winter Park hit early as Legree hooked up with Davis for a touchdown just over four minutes into the game, and then defensive back Jordan Manning stepped in front of a Michael Kern pass two plays later and it was 14-0 with still 6 minutes, 28 seconds left in the first quarter.
The defense, led by the front-line play of Jordan Ferrer, Alex Clarke and Embry Jones wreaked havoc on the Lake Nona offensive plans, and Clarke and Jones even combined for a sack-and-strip fumble that led to an E.J. Jimenez 3-yard touchdown run to start the second quarter.
Lake Nona could not find an answer. Kern had a rough night in his debut as Nona’s starting quarterback, going 7-of-17 passing for just 19 yards and the interception.
“We’ve always taken a lot of pride in playing good defense here at Winter Park,” Shifflet said. “It’s one of the things we hang our hat on and we got some guys back on the back end … and if the front three can make some plays and get to that quarterback we’ve got a shot to make some plays and hopefully get some wins.
Legree finished the game 6-of-8 passing for 126 yards and two touchdowns and he also had 47 yards rushing and a touchdown on the ground. Davis added 49 yards rushing and Paul Coutinho scored the other touchdown on a short run.
“It’s always good to get that first win under your belt. … We saw some kids really make some plays, we got some turnovers and we did some things well,” Shifflet said. “We got a long way to go. It’s just one game and it’s a long season.”