Prep Rally | Play Did You Know with facts about the young 2013 prep football season

September 20, 2013 

Welcome to this week's episode of Did You Know?

Today's topic: The 2013 prep football season, which turns four weeks old on Friday.

So let's begin serving up facts that will surprise you, impress you and help break the ice at any sort of social function.

Did you know:

• Manatee's victory last week over Washington, D.C.'s Friendship Collegiate Academy stretched the Hurricanes' regular-season winning streak to 20? Manatee's last loss in a non-playoff game came Sept. 16, 2011, against New Jersey's Don Bosco Prep. The Hurricanes' last loss in the regular season to a Florida school was Oct. 30, 2009, against Venice. The Hurricanes head to Sarasota on Friday.

• Palmetto's run of three straight playoff appearances is unprecedented in the history of the program? The Tigers have made two consecutive postseason trips on five different occasions, with the last one coming in 2007-08. But they never reached three until Dave Marino took over prior to the 2010 season. The Tigers' attempt at playoff trip No. 4 gets under way Friday night when they head to North Port for a Class 7A-District 10 opener.

• A year after not winning a game, Braden River is off to the best start in the program's short history? The Pirates take a 2-0 record into Friday night's Class 7A-District 10 lid-lifter against rival Lakewood Ranch. It's a perch they have never enjoyed since playing a full varsity schedule beginning in 2007. That it comes on the heels of a 1-9 season says plenty about head coach Curt Bradley and the resiliency of his players.

• Speaking of hot starts, Bradenton Christian is 3-0 for the first time since 2009? The Panthers began that season 7-0 but lost two straight against district opponents, costing the program, hatched in 2006, its first playoff berth. This year's Panthers are 1-0 in Class 2A-District 5 and hope to pad that mark Friday night against league foe St. Petersburg Canterbury.

• The last time Southeast opened the season with three straight losses, the team nearly made the playoffs? The 2007 Seminoles actually began that season 0-4 but righted things in time to claw their way into a three-way district tiebreaker. Though Southeast ultimately came up short in its postseason quest, the late burst is proof that bad starts can be overcome as long as teams get things on track against district opponents. The Noles try to do that Friday night in Class 5A-District 13 meeting with Bayshore.

John Lembo, prep sports writer, can be reached at 745-7057. Follow him on Twitter@JohnLembo1878.

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