BRADENTON -- After four straight losses, the time is right for Southeast. The Noles have been knocking on the door the last three games, losing by a combined 13 points.
Last year, Brian Poole was the difference when Southeast took a 24-7 halftime lead. He had to go both ways as did many of his teammates, and the Noles simply ran out of gas in a 31-24 loss. Courtney Allen fumbled twice in the second half, which killed a scoring drive for Southeast and led to a Manatee field goal.
But they say things are different. Allen is bigger and stronger and perhaps the best running back in Manatee County.
The Seminoles have more depth than theyve had in five years with a roster of more than 50 players. That should enable them to keep fresh bodies on the field.
But the key for Southeast could rest in the play of quarterback Myles Braxton-Johnson. In his first year as a starter, this will be the juniors biggest test.
He must keep his composure and not allow the Manatee rush to force him into making mistakes via fumbles or interceptions. There are people who think he is not equipped to face what he will see tonight. But he will survive the onslaught just enough to enable Southeast to squeak out a win in a close down to the wire contest and enable Poole to get his first victory over Manatee before he heads to Florida.