By James Oyola
Miami Northwestern, the reigning Class 6A champion, got its revenge against Central by defeating the Rockets 38-32 in the regional semifinals over the weekend. Central snapped the Bulls’ Miami-Dade County record 37-game win streak on Oct. 31
Miramar and Deerfield Beach also won rematches over local foes Cypress Bay and Boyd Anderson after losing to them during the regular season. The Patriots suffered a 41-40 loss to Cypress Bay on Oct. 11, while Deerfield Beach fell to Boyd Anderson 27-10 on Nov. 1.
Regional Semifinal Recap
Friday, Nov. 28
Northwestern 38, Central 32
Quarterback Teddy Bridgewater led the Bulls to a 38-32 win over Central in the Class 6A regional semifinal with a 43-yard touchdown pass to senior receiver Tyrell Lewis with 15 seconds remaining in regulation. Bridgewater, a sophomore, completed 12-of-20 passes for 252 yards and three touchdowns. Two of those touchdowns were to Northwestern’s other quarterback, senior Wayne Times, who hauled in seven catches for 128 yards, while also rushing for a score.
The Bulls have won 41 of their past 42 games and are two wins away from advancing to their third consecutive 6A championship game.
Next contest: vs. Killian (10-2)
Miami Killian 27, Miami Palmetto 6
Lamar Miller, a University of Miami verbal, showed the county why he was regarded as one of Miami Dade’s top running backs all season. Miller led the Cougars to a 27-6 win over Palmetto in the Class 6A regional semifinal by rushing for 202 yards on 24 carries and three touchdowns, all in the first half. Quarterback Ricky Rowe aided the win by completing 7-of-10 passes for 130 yards. He also rushed for a touchdown.
With the win, Killian advances to the regional finals for the first time since winning the Class 6A title in 2004.
Next contest: vs. Northwestern (11-1)
Friday, Nov. 28
Deerfield Beach 55, Boyd Anderson 22
After trailing 22-20 at halftime, Deerfield Beach and quarterback Denard Robinson blew away the Cobras in the second half en route to a 55-22 win in the Class 6A regional semifinal. Robinson, a senior, led an offense that amassed 497 total yards by completing 12-of-21 passes for 226 yards and four touchdowns, while also rushing for a score. Robinson hooked up with receiver Travis McDonald four times for 102 yards and three scores.
After falling to Boyd Anderson 27-10 on Nov. 17, the Bucks got their revenge and look to return to the Class 6A state semifinal after a heart breaking 19-15 loss to reigning 6A champion Miami Northwestern a year ago.
Before Deerfield Beach can look toward a possible rematch against Northwestern in the state semifinals, they must get past Broward County’s top passer, Miramar’s Eugene Smith. In two playoff games, Smith has completed 42-of-64 passes for 566 yards with seven touchdowns and three interceptions.
Next contest: vs. Miramar (10-2)
Miramar 34, Cypress Bay 29
Down 29-28 with 1:53 remaining in regulation, quarterback Eugene Smith, once again, carried the Patriots to a win over district foe Cypress Bay in the Class 6A regional semifinal. Smith, a senior and West Virginia verbal, capped a 6-play, 77-yard drive with a 22-yard touchdown pass to receiver Donte Chambers giving Miramar a 34-29 lead with three seconds left in the game. The standout quarterback completed 24-of-30 passes for 319 yards with four touchdowns and one interception. Smith led the Patriots to 27 second half points.
Smith led the Patriots in similar fashion in last week’s District quarterfinal defeating Carol City 28-26. The Patriots did not make it out of the regional quarterfinals last season after losing to North Miami Beach 30-13. However, the play of standout quarterback Eugene Smith proves that this year’s team is definitely different.
Miramar will advance to face a stout Deerfield Beach offense that accumulated 497 yards in their 55-22 win over Boyd Anderson.
Next contest: at Deerfield Beach (10-2)
Hardwood Heroes: Kenny Boynton and Brandon Knight
Kenny Boynton and Brandon Knight, regarded as the top two guards in the nation within their respective classes, continued their on-court dominance in their season openers. Boynton ad Knight led Team Breakdown to two AAU national championships this summer and were arguably the best backcourt tandem in the country.
Boynton (6-foot-2, 180 pounds), a senior, led American Heritage (Plantation) to an 86-63 win over Oldsmar Christian on Nov. 26 by scoring a game-high 42 points to go along with eight rebounds. Boynton, a University of Florida commit, averaged 34.4 points per game last season and was Florida's leading scorer for the second consecutive year. He averaged 31.7 points per game as a sophomore.
Knight (6-foot-3, 170 pounds), a junior, led Pine Crest to a 76-62 win over Northeast by scoring a game-high 36 points and extended their win streak to 21 games dating back to last season. Knight led Pine Crest to the Class 3A championship last season where he averaged 20.5 points, eight rebounds and six assists per game.