Dangerous Titans Stand In the Way of Blue Darters Post-Season Glory

After 9 games, including 8 consecutive wins where our hometown Apopka Blue Darters have averaged over 50 points a game, Apopka’s opportunity to have a chance to repeat as State Champions comes down to this—beat the talented Olympia Titans on their home field or risk the possibility of staying home for the post season. Beat Olympia and the Darters clinch the Class 8-A, District 4 Championship and roll into the post season with a first round home game. On the other hand, should we stumble, the result would most likely be a 3 way tie for 1st place in District 4 between Apopka, Olympia and West Orange. As if that idea isn’t unappealing enough, a 3-way tie opens up the possibility of a doomsday scenario where the Blue Darters could possibly miss the play-offs entirely. The possibilities of the outcome of a 3-way tie are too numerous to mention, and fortunately, even with a 3-way tie, the Blue Darters would most likely still make the play-offs, but the point is, the importance of beating Olympia this Friday is impossible to overestimate.

Blue Darter Sports Central ShowSo who are these Olympia Titans? They are a paradoxical bunch. Loaded with talent on offense, led by a QB, Deondre Francois’, who is highly recruited by several top Division I colleges, Dexter Williams, a Junior RB who gained 227 yards against Apopka last year, Mike Macon, a versatile WR/PR who gained over 700 yards total offense last year and Keveon Smith, a sleek WR who connected with Francios’ for more than 600 receiving yards in 2012. Btw, Olympia beat Apopka 38-21 at home last year and gashed the Blue Darter defense for an astounding 500+ yards. In fact, Olympia has beaten us the 3 out of the last 4 years.

On the other hand, Olympia comes into this game with a surprising 2-6 record and a defense that is giving up 30 points per game. The Titans are obviously suffering from the loss of long time head coach Bob Head, who left after last season for neighborhood rival West Orange, and then returned to pound Olympia 43-0 last Thursday. Nevertheless, Olympia played undefeated Lake Mary tough in a close 25-21 loss recently AND have the added incentive of the possibility of making their way into the play-offs with a win over the Blue Darters on Friday.

What to expect on Friday? First, count on Apopka Head Coach Rick Darlington bringing in a bunch of Blue Darters who are ready to go out and win a Championship. Coach D has numerous strengths as a coach, one of the most important is an uncanny ability to get his team ready to play with intensity every week. Another obvious Darlington strength is pure offensive genius. Put Rick Darlington, coaching a team with an over-abundance of offensive talent, up against a team giving up 30 points a game, add an axe to grind (3 recent losses) and mix in a District Championship on the line and you have a recipe for a Blue Darter offensive explosion.

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