LAKEWOOD RANCH -- Clinging to a one-point lead as the opposition marched down the field, Bradenton Christian needed a play.
The Panthers needed something to swing momentum back to their side, and they got exactly what they required to stem the tide.
Junior lineman Garrett Mitchell sacked Out-of-Door Academy quarterback Nate Strawderman during the Thunder's long opening series of the second half.
From there, the Panthers intercepted a pass and broke open a close game with three Sinclair Laskett touchdown runs en route to a 38-9 victory over the host Thunder on Friday.
BCS not only won its regular season opener, but earned the program's first victory over ODA.
"I have a lot of respect for what (ODA head coach) Brett Timmons does with that football program," BCS head coach Allan Gerber said. "If I'm going to get beat, I'm going to get beat by a class guy who coaches them hard and coaches them sound. It was just our night (Friday)."
Laskett was the recipient of the interception that occurred three plays after Mitchell's sack, and then the senior tailback/slot receiver went to work on the offensive side of the ball.
He ripped off touchdown runs of 18, one and six yards to cap BCS' three possessions following the turnover.
In fact, the Panthers scored on all four of their second-half possessions, adding a 43-yard touchdown pass from eighth-grade backup quarterback Brett Gerber to sophomore Fielding Goodwin with 1 minute, 13 seconds left in the fourth quarter.
"When your offense isn't generating any kind of first downs or being able to get these guys off the field and give (the defense) rest, that's a lot," said Timmons, whose defense gave up 297 rushing yards. "They got us on a couple fake punts to sustain drives, so that's like another eight, nine, 10 plays you are playing consecutively (on) defense. It's kind of like a jab in boxing. Those little hits start taking things out of you."
Meanwhile, the Thunder struggled in the first half with Strawderman under center. The club had just four yards of total offense, before backup Jimmy Kuebler took over the reins at the end of the second quarter.
Kuebler, a sophomore, led ODA on an 80-yard touchdown drive to close out the first half with his team trailing 10-9.
However, once the momentum shifted toward BCS, the Thunder's offense sputtered and Strawderman re-entered with the game out of reach to finish the game at quarterback.
Timmons, though, said Kuebler will probably be the starting quarterback based off Friday's performance heading into next week.
Kuebler converted 9 of 13 passes for 66 yards and an interception. He also had eight rushing yards, but the key was his poise at the end of the second quarter to bring his team within a point heading into halftime.