DUNEDIN — Tarpon Springs showed that it’s more than just a one-man show Friday night.
Playing without leading rusher Michael Ford (shoulder), the Spongers delivered a well-rounded performance in soundly beating nearby rival Dunedin.
“A lot of people want to say that all we have is Michael Ford,” Tarpon Springs coach Ron Hawn said. “But clearly we play pretty good defense and clearly we have a few other running backs and athletes.”
Patrick Miller (17 carries for 110 yards, 2 TDs) and Montel Johnson (15 of 61, TD) neutralized the impact of Ford’s absence. The duo combined for Tarpon Springs’ three first-quarter touchdowns and the Spongers didn’t look back.
Dunedin’s lone score came in the second quarter when freshman quarterback Janero Crankfield, filling in for Givanni Gonzalez, threaded an 8-yard pass to receiver Jayvon Fitzpatrick.
Tarpon Springs also started a backup under center for the second straight week. Junior Brandon Casler settled in nicely this week, completing seven of eight passes for 128 yards and two touchdowns. He connected with Johnson (49 yards) and Mitchell Wilcox (23 yards) for the scores.
Tarpon Springs 21 0 14 9 — 44
Dunedin 0 7 0 0 — 7
TS – Miller 3 run (Zervos kick)
TS – Johnson 1 run (Zervos kick)
TS – Miller 2 run (Zervos kick)
D – Fitzpatrick 8 pass from Crankfield (Deely kick)
TS – Johnson 49 pass from Casler (Zervos kick)
TS – Wilcox 23 pass from Casler (Zervos kick)
TS – Safety (Crankfield sacked by Wilcox)
TS – Turner 71 kick return (Zervos kick)