It was just like the good old days on Monday night for the Miramar Patriots. Just a few short years after the “Darkside Defense” established its reputation as a totally dominant unit, the Patriots defense delivered a gem on Monday night.
Hosting Western in a key District 12-8A contest in which the loser faced playoff elimination, the Patriots defense completely shut down quarterback Wade Freebeck and the Western offense en route to an easy 27-0 shutout.
With the win, Miramar (5-4, 3-1) made Cypress Bay (4-0) the district champion, but the Patriots but will now square off against Flanagan on Saturday at 5 p.m. with the winner advancing to the playoffs as the district runner-up.
Western saw a promising season that started 6-0 falter to 6-2 and 2-2; the Wildcats were eliminated from postseason consideration.
Harassed all night by a vicious Miramar pass rush, Freebeck was just 5 of 28 for 22 yards, and the Western running game was virtually nonexistent, totaling just 9 yards — which would have been minus-14 had it not been for a 23-yard run on a fake punt by Ethan Lewis in the third quarter.
“They’re getting there, but they haven’t earned that Darkside nickname just yet,” Miramar coach Damon Cogdell said. “We knew Western had a good football team, and we did a good job of really shutting them down cold tonight for sure. We’re taking each week like a playoff game now, and our next playoff game is against Flanagan on Saturday.”
Miramar led just 7-0 at the half before breaking things open in the third quarter when running back Eric Pittman took over. He had a 36-yard run that set up his 3-yard touchdown to make it 14-0 and, two series later, took off on a 50-yard run to make it 20-0 with 6:01 left in the third.
• Deerfield Beach 44, Coral Springs 8: Deerfield Beach jumped out to an early 19-0 lead after the first quarter and never looked back as the Bucks defeated host Coral Springs.
The win sets up a pivotal Friday night home matchup against District 11-8A leader South Plantation.
Deerfield Beach (4-3, 3-1) scored on its first three possessions, including touchdown runs of 11 and 3 yards by Aeron McNeal.
Brandon Powell added a 19-yard touchdown run in the first quarter. McNeal finished with 115 rushing yards and two scores in the game. Powell added 163 yards rushing and two touchdowns.
On defense, the Bucks held Coral Springs (3-5, 1-3) scoreless until the fourth quarter and forced three turnovers.
Coral Springs was led offensively by Cody Rounds, who had 92 rushing yards and Kevin Ferguson, who added 37 yards on the ground and one touchdown.
• Calvary Christian 21, Moore Haven 14: Host Calvary Christian squandered a 14-point fourth-quarter lead as Moore Haven rallied for a victory in a game rescheduled because of inclement weather caused by Hurricane Sandy.
The Terriers (7-1-1) took advantage of three Calvary Christian fumbles, including one by senior quarterback Isaac Hoza with under a minute remaining. Senior Darius Cohens caught a 17-yard pass from sophomore Bronson Bass for the game-winning score.
Hoza threw two first-quarter touchdown passes — 29 yards to sophomore Alexander Fifelski and 42 yards to junior Matthew Nguyen for the Eagles (3-5), who lost their third in a row.
CHRISTINA DE NICOLA