The defense will get the bulk of the credit for Braden River's historic victory, and rightly so, but let's not forget the kid who takes the snaps.
Jacob Huesman plays as if he has a Ph.D. in quarterbackology. He's poised, calm and collected, which is part of his intangible gifts that are impossible to teach.
The Pirates didn't play a perfect game on offense Friday night and at times it looked as if Plant City was going to snatch the victory away, but that's when Huesman is at his best.
On Braden River's game clinching touchdown in the final quarter of its 17-7 victory, Huesman looked right, looked up the middle and back to his right again. Then he turned to his left as if he knew No. 14 would be standing there alone and delivered a perfect strike that Juwaan Jenkins took into the end zone.
"The play was designed for our tight end up the middle and our quarterback is very smart," Braden River offensive coordinator Eric Sanders said. "He didn't panic. He reset his feet went to another option, the outside receiver was wide open and he delivered it on the money and (Jenkins) took it in untouched. You can teach that (kind of play) and grind it and practice it, but at the end of the day the quarterback still has to go out there and make the decision and be able to see things. There is no weakness with that kid,"
Huesman is the type of kid everybody loves. He is not boastful, doesn't do any of the diva stuff you often see from talented skill players and just seems like the boy next door. He is an excellent student who loves to play the game of football, but he's not in love with himself.
"He is going to make it at the college level because he has those intangibles." Sanders said. "He understands all the little things that it takes to be a good quarterback. He knows how to operate the offense, understands the down and distance and the situation and how to do your job."
In so many ways, Huesman epitomizes what this Braden River football program is all about and how it has risen from that 1-9 season two years ago and prior to that when it seemed as if no one wanted to coach this team.
Huesman was a virtual unknown going into his junior season, flying well below the radar. Slowly, his stock rose and now he's a proven winner. Huesman has not lost a regular season game as the Pirates' starting quarterback in the past two years.
That 1-9 season has fallen deep into the rear view mirror, but it is a good reference point to gauge how far the team and Huesman have come.
"I don't have enough words to say how much my team means to me," Huesman said. "Without them, I am not where I am at. I couldn't be more proud of them. To go back-to-back regular seasons unbeaten and going to the final four is something I could never even dream about. It's absolutely insane. I love it, I can't explain it any better."
The Pirates will take on mammoth power St. Thomas Aquinas at home next week in the 7A state semifinals and nobody outside of Manatee County will give them chance.
Aquinas is the United Nations of high school football in Florida. It gets players from all over the country who somehow wind up with a Broward County zip code.
So next week will be a bunch of hometown kids going against a football program often referred to as the Broward-Dade All-Stars.
Huesman doesn't care about the odds. You might say he relishes them. Two years ago, he wasn't even sure he would be Braden River's starting quarterback. Now he carries the offense on his shoulders.
So why not dream big?
"I am looking forward to playing them. It should be a good game. You should come," Huesman said in his unassuming manner, not understanding that we wouldn't miss this for the world.