Fort Lauderdale Calvary Christian finally had the chance to host football games at night this season.
On Thursday night, the Eagles fed off the playoff atmosphere to move a step forward in their goal of winning their conference championship.
Led by Jordan Cabral’s 251 all-purpose yards and three touchdowns, the Eagles defeated Miami Immaculata-La Salle 28-7 in a quarterfinal playoff of the Southeastern Football Conference.
Calvary Christian (7-2), playing in its first season in the 16-team independent league, will host Boca Raton Pope John Paul II next Thursday in the conference semifinals.
Coral Springs Charter will play Fort Pierce John Carroll in the other semifinal.
La Salle (7-2) is eliminated from the playoffs but will play a consolation bracket game at Fort Lauderdale Westminster Academy next week.
“We were thankful we got to play at home, and we certainly love playing in front of our crazies here,” Calvary Christian coach Kirk Hoza said. “Playing on the field you practice on is always a blessing. It’s a great league and, obviously, it’s exciting with the playoffs.”
Cabral helped the Eagles take the advantage early when he caught a screen pass and rumbled 78 yards to the La Salle 2-yard line, setting up their first score on a 1-yard quarterback sneak by Greg LaStella two plays later.
A well-executed screen pass to Cabral in the third quarter gave Calvary Christian a 21-0 lead.
Backup quarterback Trystan Lago, who entered the game after LaStella was knocked out on a hard tackle, looped a pass to Cabral behind the Royal Lions’ rush, allowing him to rumble 37 yards for the score.
“On a short week, I thought our kids practiced very well,” Hoza said. “You never know because it’s hard to replicate the offense La Salle runs. Our kids adjusted, and getting a couple of scores early really helped.”
• Nova 32, South Broward 0: Junior quarterback Kevin Dzwonkowski threw three touchdowns, ran for another and the Nova defense claimed a third consecutive shutout as the Titans (4-4, 1-2 District 15-7A) defeated South Broward (0-8, 0-4).
• McArthur 13, Western 7 (2OT): McArthur (4-4, 2-3 District 12-8A) was able to defeat Western (0-8, 0-5) in overtime thanks to a 3-yard touchdown run by quarterback Janarvis Pough and an interception by Damian Richardson in the second overtime.
• Taravella 26, Douglas 21: Coach Dan Marguriet reached deep into his bag of tricks, turning a fake punt and halfback pass into 10 points, and senior kicker Alex Pacelko kicked four field goals as Taravella (4-4, 4-2 11-8A) knocked off Douglas (4-4, 2-4)