Nine seniors closed their football careers at Out-of-Door Academy on a high note Friday as the Thunder defeated Lakeland Santa Fe Catholic, 36-0, in a Sunshine State Athletic Conference football game at Thunder Stadium.
ODA (3-7) finished its season by winning two in a row, both at home, despite what second-year head coach Ken Sommers called “some challenges.”
“I loved that we were able to play a little smashmouth football (Friday),” Sommers said. “ I'm thrilled with the way we finished (the season): 36-0 is a signature win for us. It's a great way to send our seniors out. Hopefully, some of these younger guys see what can happen when you stick with it, keep fighting, keep working, trying to get better.”
Thunder junior quarterback Dakota Dickerson rushed for 109 yards on 16 carries, scoring three rushing touchdowns and passing for a fourth. Formerly a running back, Dickerson was converted to quarterback earlier this season after Gus Mahler went down with a knee injury.
The Thunder struck often, starting with a 7-yard touchdown run by Dickerson. Out-of-Door led 7-0 with 6 minutes, 46 seconds remaining in the first quarter after Filip Svoboda connected on a point-after kick.
Dickerson scored again on a 41-yard run with 1:11 left in the first quarter. Svoboda’s kick gave the Thunder a 14-0 lead.
Running back J.T. Taylor, serving as Santa Fe Catholic’s third quarterback of the night, was called for intentional grounding in the Hawks’ end zone, resulting in a safety and a 16-0 Thunder lead with 9:12 left in the first half.
The Thunder scored again with 4 seconds left in the half. Dickerson connected with Joey Runge on a 10-yard pass and Christina Lutton made the PAT as Out-of-Door went up 23-0 at halftime. The big play of the drive was a 34-yard pass from Dickerson to Jason Finbeberg.
Out-of-Door scored twice in the third quarter on 3-yard runs by Christian McCarthy (7:07) and Dickerson (1:06). Lutton missed the first PAT of the second half but made the second.
The game was played with a running clock during the fourth quarter.
Out-of-Door 36, Santa Fe Catholic 0
Santa Fe Catholic
ODA – Dickerson 7 run (Svoboda kick), 6:46.
ODA – Dickerson 41 run (Svoboda kick), 1:11.
ODA – Safety on intentional grounding penalty in end zone, 9:12.
ODA – Runge 10 pass from Dickerson (C. Lutton kick), :04.
ODA – McCarthy 3 run (kick failed), 7:07.
ODA – Dickerson 3 run (C. Lutton kick), 1:06.
Rushing: Santa Fe Catholic – J.T. Taylor 6-(-21), Cody Bush 8-15, Jeramiah Davis 1-0. Out-of-Door Academy – Dakota Dickerson 16-109, Christian McCarthy 13-66, Jason Fineberg 4-27, McCabe Ballance 1-(-2).
Passing: Santa Fe Catholic – Bush 4-10-9-1, Taylor 0-2-0-0, Davis 1-1-(-2)-0. Out-of-Door Academy – Dickerson 7-9-88-1-1.
Receiving: Santa Fe Catholic – Jack Stone 2-7, Alvarez 1-6, Taylor 1-(-2), Cole Frye 1-(-4). Out-of-Door Academy – Joey Runge 3-17, Fineberg 1-34, Colin Castro 2-4, Ethan Bertrand 1-33.