American Heritage is back in the win column against rival Cardinal Gibbons.
The Patriots’ victory was the result of a huge night by junior quarterback Edwin Rhodes, who completed 28-of-33 passes for 338 yards and four touchdowns for a 28-21 nondistrict win at Cardinal Gibbons High on Friday.
American Heritage (5-1) scored the deciding points with 2:45 left in regulation when Rhodes completed a 24-yard scoring pass to Jacolby Spells to break a 21-21 tie.
“Rhodes has been awesome and has been the whole year,” American Heritage coach Pat Surtain said. “We have some receivers and he was able to spread the ball around.”
The win also snapped a two-game losing streak to Gibbons, which lost for only the second time in the past 18 games. The Chiefs (4-2) had won four in a row following an season-opening defeat to Miami Northwestern.
Heritage (5-1) has won the four games in a row and has outscored its opponent 184-95.
Rhodes finished the second half with three touchdown passes.
The Patriots opened the second half by scoring with only 1:05 expired when Rhodes threw a 8-yard scoring pass to Spells for a 14-0 lead.
Rhodes’ 14-yard touchdown pass to Douglas Emilien with 7:02 left in the fourth quarter gave the Patriots a 21-14 lead.
Gibbons answered quickly as Antonio Spencer returned the ensuing kickoff 98 yards, tying the score at 21.
Down by 14 points midway through the third quarter, Gibbons rallied to tie the score at 14-14 on a pair of scoring passes by junior quarterback Brody Palhegyi. The first was an 8-yard strike to Majon Wright and the other went 26 yards to Jackson Marseille with under minute left in the quarter.
There was a handful of opportunities for both Gibbons and Heritage in the first half, but penalties, turnovers and blown scoring chances had the Patriots clinging to a 7-0 lead at the break.
The lone score by American Heritage completed a 71-yard drive when Rhodes completed a 6-yard scoring pass to junior Oronde Gadsden with 10:25 left in the second quarter.
The Patriots’ 7-0 lead at the half was the lowest scoring first half in this series since they led 3-0 in a 10-7 playoff victory on Nov. 18, 2006.
Heritage had two other chances for field goals in the half, but a 26-yard attempt in the first quarter was blocked and a 33-yard attempt went wide of the target late in the second quarter.
Following the Heritage touchdown, the Chiefs put themselves in position for points, but the drive ended when Palhegyi’s pass attempt on fourth-and-1 from the Patriots’ 5 was intercepted in the end zone by Earl Little.