SBHS Football Sidelined in the Playoffs

SBHS playoff loss doesn’t diminish a stellar season for the Bulldogs.

Ethan Lacouty, Editor

Heading into the postseason, it seemed that South Broward’s football team was on a bullet train en route to their first round playoff game against the Homestead Broncos. With eight wins and only one loss, the team hoped the positive momentum would help them go on a deep playoff run. But, the Broncos derailed them, overpowering the Bulldogs’ defense by a staggering 52 points. In the end, the score was 55-3, with the Bulldogs only managing to post a field goal in the first few minutes of the game. The blowout was a disappointing capper to an otherwise stellar season.

It all began with a smashing 42-0 shutout against Nova High School that gave the team newfound confidence that the rest of the season would be special.

“At that point in the season, we were focused on staying consistent for each game,” said SBHS offensive lineman Ian Davis Jr.

In the first home game, South Broward dominated Flanagan High School 29-6. More than 2,200 Bulldog fans packed the stands, just a few hundred short of a school record.  

“The atmosphere was absolutely electric,” said SBHS senior Nicole Newmeyer. “Everyone was so lively and there was a ton of people cheering.”

In the next matchup, South Broward led Piper High School 16-14 at halftime, but the game was canceled due to thunderstorms and removed from both teams’ record.

The Bulldogs’ only blemish to their otherwise perfect record would follow with  a disappointing loss against Miramar, 34-12. The Bulldogs defense could not stop the historically stacked Patriots, complete with a running back heading to a D-1 college. Some players felt the team left too many opportunities on the field.

“We just didn’t execute,” Davis Jr said. “We used that game as motivation for the rest of the year.”

And it showed. The following week, South Broward made its comeback with a 29-17 victory over West Broward. The Bulldogs defense was all over the Wildcats, forcing four turnovers which led to multiple touchdowns.

“We corrected our mistakes and came into this game believing that losing wasn’t an option,” said Davis Jr.

Entering the second half of the season, South Broward cruised past the South Plantation Paladins, 43-6. Bulldog fans who traveled to Plantation to watch the game were not surprised with the outcome. 

“I would have been shocked if we didn’t beat them,” said SBHS senior Jasmine Pajares.

The Bulldogs’ dominance continued into the next game as they had no problem trouncing the clearly inferior Everglades High School football team. The game ended in a shutout 35-0.

The following matchup against North Miami Senior High School proved a bit trickier though. Down 21-14 late in the 4th quarter, South Broward picked off an errant pass from North Miami, worked the ball down the field, and scored. Soon after, the game headed into overtime, with South Broward scoring first on a rushing touchdown. On the Pioneers’ turn, the Bulldogs blitzed North Miami’s quarterback causing him to fumble the ball into the hands of a South Broward defender. The Bulldogs’ sideline erupted into cheers as the players rushed onto the field celebrating a pivotal victory, 28-21.

“We were all able to come together, play as a team, and win a tough game,” said SBHS lineman Jovaun Thorpe. 

No drama ensued in the following week, as South Broward racked up another lopsided victory against the McArthur Mustangs 29-7. The final game of the regular season ended on a strong note for the Bulldogs when they defeated the Cooper City Cowboys in their homecoming game, 28-14.

It was a good season for the Bulldogs as they finished the year on a five game winning streak, before getting knocked out in the first round of the playoffs. Despite the discouraging finish, the Bulldogs remain determined to fight their way to the top of the dog pile next season.

“We will bounce back and become a great team,” said Thorpe. “We’re definitely headed in the right direction.”