State Colleges

Robert Armes stars in St. Thomas University’s first football game. This is what happened 

St. Thomas University running back Robert Armes scores the school's first touchdown in the third quarter against the Thomas Moore Saints at Pace High School in Miami Gardens on Saturday, Sept. 7, 2019.
St. Thomas University running back Robert Armes scores the school's first touchdown in the third quarter against the Thomas Moore Saints at Pace High School in Miami Gardens on Saturday, Sept. 7, 2019. ctrainor@miamiherald.com

There’s a reason why freshman running back Robert Armes agreed to come to St. Thomas University.

“They were the only school that recruited me,” said Armes, who scored a total of 20 touchdowns the past two years at West Palm Beach Dwyer High School. “Any school that would take a chance on me … I would love to make history.”

Armes did that Saturday, playing in the first football game in the Bobcats history and also scoring their first touchdown.

The Bobcats lost to visiting Thomas More 38-14 but despite the defeat, it’s likely Armes will never forget his 12-yard TD run to the right pylon, which came with 10:32 left in the third quarter.

“It’s called ‘10 Belly,’ ” Armes said of the play. “It’s a counter play. There’s usually a cutback lane to the left, but it was all clogged. I saw a hole to the right. Usually, we’re not supposed to go there, but I had to make a decision. I saw a hole and ran it into the end zone.”

Armes led all STU rushers in carries (20) and yards (93). He also caught four passes for 22 yards, giving him a team-high 115 scrimmage yards, and he did it all despite the suffocating heat on the Monsignor Pace field.

It was a noon kickoff, with temperatures hovering around 95 degrees, and Armes said he cramped up twice during the game.

“I’m good, though. I’m a dog — I’ll go through it,” he said. “I’m from South Florida. I’m supposed to be used to it, but it took a toll on me today.”

Armes wasn’t the only one who wilted at times in the heat. The STU cheerleaders and dancers — who have been training in their gym as opposed to practicing outdoors like the football players — might have suffered the most.

One STU trainer, who was asked how many cheerleaders/dancers had overheated on this afternoon, said: “Almost all of them. I’ve lost count.”

One STU cheerleader said at least four of her teammates had fainted and went for cover under the sideline tents that came equipped with portable fans.

The Thomas More team, based in Crestview Hills, Kentucky, also suffered some cramping, and the players didn’t have portable fans on their sideline, surely making the afternoon far more uncomfortable.

Thomas More wide receiver Mitchell Hogue, asked about the heat on Saturday as opposed to what it’s like in Kentucky, said: “It’s way hotter here. But we’ve been drinking a lot of water.”

THIS AND THAT

Thomas More led 24-0 before STU finally scored and was never seriously threatened.

STU’s other touchdown was on a 5-yard touchdown pass from Jordan Sepulveda to D’Aumante Oliver, who caught a high pass in the left corner of the end zone.

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