Hallandale leaped its greatest obstacle remaining toward clinching a playoff berth on Friday night.
Behind three total touchdowns by Zack Moss and three passing touchdowns by Tyler Huntley, the Chargers took down Coconut Creek 36-22 in a pivotal District 16-5A victory at home.
“They’re big for this offense,” Hallandale coach Dameon Jones said. “Tyler and Zack make it go.”
Moss made it go first. On the first play from scrimmage, he took a carry 73 yards for a touchdown and finished with 128 yards and two rushing scores on 12 attempts plus 83 receiving yards and another touchdown.
“I envisioned it from [Thursday] night,” said Moss, the UM commitment who was recently offered by Utah and Louisville. “My body felt good, then my O-line did a great job, and the offensive coach gave me a great game plan, so I just executed.”
After Hallandale (5-1, 3-0) led 21-6 at the end the first quarter, Coconut Creek rallied for 16 consecutive points to take a 22-21 lead early in the third, but Huntley threw a pair of touchdown passes, and the Chargers defense held the Cougars the rest of the way to seal it.
“I didn’t get worried because we’ve been down before,” Jones said. “I’ve got the ultimate faith in my offense. I wasn’t worried at all because I know they can put up points.”
Huntley, a Utah commitment, hit UF commit Joshua Hammond for a 63-yard touchdown on a wide-open go route over the middle with 2:19 remaining in the third to take the lead. He then dumped off a screen pass to Moss on Hallandale’s next possession that Moss took 75 yards for a score.
Huntley, coming off a 500-yard, seven-touchdown performance versus Jackson, threw for 278 yards on 15-of-29 passing.
“We just had to come out in the second half and execute the way we do on a daily basis,” Huntley said. “We came out a little slow, a little shaky, but we overcame that. That happens to every great team.”
With losses to American Heritage and now Hallandale, a talented Coconut Creek team (3-3, 1-2) is virtually eliminated from playoff contention.
Quarterback Jhakari Harrison threw for 259 yards on 16-of-36 passing. He tossed touchdowns to Anthony Foreman and Trayvon Mullen, who finished with five catches for 119 yards.
The Chargers led 21-6 when Huntley had a batted ball at the line of scrimmage when backed up deep in their own territory go up in the air and get intercepted in the end zone by Creek’s Lashawn Paulino for a score.
The Cougars took their one lead of the night early in the third when a 49-yard completion to Mullen set up a Matt Betancurt 25-yard field goal.
At this point, it’d be easy for Hallandale to look forward to its Oct. 30 matchup with American Heritage, which should decide the district title, but the Chargers are intent on keeping their focus on the next game.
That would be Miramar next Friday with another district outing against Cardinal Gibbons before the showdown with Heritage.
HAL- Moss 73 run (kick failed)
CC- Foreman 26 pass from Harrison (kick failed)
HAL- Cotto 20 pass from Huntley (Simpkins pass from Huntley)
HAL- Moss 6 run (Hardy kick)
CC- Paulino 0 INT return (pass failed)
CC- Mullen 9 pass from Harrison (Betancurt kick)
CC- FG Betancurt 25
HAL- Hammond 63 pass from Huntley (Hardy kick)
HAL- Moss 75 pass from Huntley (Huntley run)
Rushing (att-yds) -- CC: McCray 1-(-1), McConn 1-0, Harrison 12-8, Mullen 2-15, Benoit 4-34, Young 15-56. HALL: Simpkins 2-(-16), Hayes 1-0, Roberts 1-13, Huntley 5-27, Moss 12-128.
Passing (comp-att-int, yds)-- CC: Young 0-1-0, 0, Harrison 16-35-1, 259. HALL: Huntley 15-29-1, 278.
Receiving (rec-yds-TD) -- CC: Benoit 2-18, Young 4-34, Foreman 2-41, Victor 2-47, Mullen 5-119. HALL: Hayes 1-(-3), Hardy 1-12, Simpkins 3-19, Cotto 3-63, Moss 2-83, Hammond 5-102.