SARASOTA -- Ty'Ron Sumpter left his varsity football debut leaving an impression on the Palmetto coaching staff.
The rising junior played last season at the junior varsity level and received his chance to prove whether or not he can hack it at the varsity game when he was inserted at linebacker for the Tigers' spring game at Booker.
Sumpter registered a couple sacks and was constantly flocking to the ball as Palmetto peeled off a 36-26 victory Friday.
"I was ready to show the coaches what I'm made of," Sumpter said.
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He did that with his ball-hawking presence that paid off with a fumble recovery in the second quarter. The turnover was one of three fumbles lost by the Tornadoes.
"He's a kid off of our jv," said Palmetto head coach Dave Marino of Sumpter. "He think he had a (heck) of a job. ... He had some tackles for losses. He played well and there were a lot of bright spots. We really got a chance to see some kids step up (Friday), and we're excited about that."
Sumpter's game was indicative of the strides he's made since the first day of spring practice.
"At the start of spring, we didn't even know if he was going to be a starter," Palmetto assistant coach Matt Braselton said. "We thought he may be a junior playing jv, and he'd just develop within the scheme. And he listened to everything he was taught and bought into what we were doing. And just really fundamentally and schematically developed as a football player. It showed (Friday), if you just do what you're taught, plays will come to you. (Friday), he did what he was taught and the plays came to him. And when the plays came to him, the biggest thing was he finished."
On the offensive end, the Tigers got off to a quick start when Jack Allison's 40-yard pitch and catch to Deanthony Warrick found paydirt just 25 seconds into the contest.
Quincy Washington tallied a touchdown with 4:01 remaining in the first quarte, and ran in the ensuing two-point conversion to give the Tigers a 15-0 lead.
Allison ran in Palmetto's third touchdown from a yard out early in the second quarter, then the Tigers' signal-caller connected with Simon Williams to produce a 38-yard score that capped Palmetto's first-half scoring.
Palmetto's scoring in the second half came from Allison's 47-yard pitch and catch to Dearius Washington, who broke a tackle and juked his way to the end zone, with 8:56 left in the third quarter and was capped by a safety when Booker snapped the ball over its punter's head on the next possession.
"It's always an evaluative tool to see which young kids can play on Friday nights and which ones are maybe going to have to go back and play some jv," Marino said.