Getting his chance to shine on national television, Demarcus Christmas didn't disappoint for Manatee County fans.
A starter on Florida State University's defensive line, the former Manatee High Hurricane played in his second College Gameday featured game this season when the Seminoles battled Clemson.
Christmas recorded a sack and broke up a pass during a four tackle game.
And despite the Noles' 37-34 home defeat to their Atlantic Coast Conference rivals, Christmas showcased why Manatee County is full of Hometown Heroes.
This week's list also spotlights a Manatee High alum and Palmetto High alum making waves on the college football scene, while dabbling onto the soccer pitch and the cross-country course for other Hometown Heroes.
So here's the rest of this week's key contributors:
Kelvin McKnight - When he was at Manatee High, McKnight lit up the gridiron with his electric pace and route running skills. This past Saturday against SEC foe Mississippi State, McKnight flourished with arguably his best game of the season, considering the opponent. McKnight, a wide receiver for Samford, lit up the Bulldogs for 13 catches for 115 yards and a touchdown. Granted, Mississippi State is down this season with a 3-5 mark and won the game 56-41, but McKnight was a big reason why the Samford Bulldogs stayed in the game against the Power Six Conference opponent. McKnight's 7-yard touchdown in the game was part of a run Samford, an FCS school, made to get within 49-41 before MSU closed it out in the fourth quarter. McKnight now has 48 catches for 608 yards and six touchdowns, which ranks second among receivers in all three categories.
Maka Matelau - The linebacker is fifth on Culver-Stockton College's football team in tackles. Matelau, a Palmetto High alum, has 42 tackles this season, including three for a loss, for the Wildcats.
Lauren Csubak - A former cross-country star at Saint Stephen's, the junior recently took eighth place in the Sunshine State Conference Championship for Saint Leo University, a Division II program. She ran the 6K event in a personal-best 22:03 for Saint Leo, which won the conference title and is ranked No. 24 nationally. Csubak's next meet is the NCAA Division II South Region Championships held this Saturday on the Saint Leo campus.
Juliana Guida - After demonstrating her shutdown defending style for the Lakewood Ranch Mustangs girls soccer team, Guida is a starter on the back line in her junior season for Florida Southern in Lakeland. The Mocs just completed their season, where the defense allowed 17 goals (1.26 per game) with Guida excelling. Former Lakewood Ranch teammates Delaney Riggins and Aubrey Riggins and Braden River alums Kendal McNab and Abigail Holmes are also on the Mocs' roster.
Bri Reda - The Lakewood Ranch alum started all 17 games this season for Georgia Southwestern's soccer team. A defender, Reda scored two goals and assisted one other time. Both goals came from the penalty spot.
Tori Biach - The Saint Stephen's alum is averaging 2.33 kills per set as an attacking presence for the Northern State volleyball team. Now a senior for the Wolves, who are based out of Aberdeen, S.D., are 16-8 on the season and return to the court this Friday against Southwest Minnesota State. The two compete in the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference and are Division II programs.