The Cougars moved to 5-1 with a 45-13 victory over Riverview on Friday.
Durant hosted the Riverview Sharks on Friday night, cruising to a 45-13 win and moving to 5-1 on the season.
Riverview took the opening possession and quickly went three-and-out following a third down sack from linebackers Derrick Gaskin and Austin Bovee, meeting the Sharks’ quarterback in the backfield. On the ensuing punt, the snap was high and bounced into the end zone where it was recovered by outside linebacker Jordan Fernandes for a touchdown. Receiver Jeremiah Gines converted the two-point conversion and in just 65 seconds, without the offense stepping on the field, Durant had quickly jumped out to an 8-0 lead.
Riverview went three-and-out again on their second drive and Durant took back over at their own 23-yard line. Following a completion to Gines and a couple of short carries from Calub Connell, running back Alex Daley found a hole and bounced outside for a big gain down to the Riverview 11-yard line. A few plays later Connell found pay dirt on a short carry up the middle and the Cougars had extended their lead to 14-0 halfway through the first quarter.
Durant’s next drive started at their own seven and a carry from quarterback Marcus Miguele, in addition to a personal foul penalty on Riverview, moved the Cougars out of their own red zone. Durant moved down the field through the air on their second offensive drive, with two big completions to sophomore receiver Jaylin Torres. Now inside the Riverview red zone, Miguele made his way onto the scoresheet as he rolled out to his left and fought his way to the end zone on an eight-yard touchdown run. Riverview jumped offside on the extra point attempt and Durant opted instead to go for two, converted by Connell and extending the Cougars’ lead to 22-0.
A bobbled return from Riverview left them starting their next drive at the eight-yard line, gaining just two yards on three plays and narrowly getting a pressured punt away to their own 37-yard line.
Durant worked their way inside the Shark’s red zone. Lined up at the 10-yard line, Miguele dropped back and lofted a fade to Gines who hauled in a stellar catch in the back corner of the end zone and the Cougars were up 28-0.
Durant forced yet another Riverview punt but the Sharks would show life on the ensuing Cougar drive, forcing an interception that was returned for a touchdown to cut the deficit to 28-7. But Durant would waste no time answering back. On the first play of scrimmage, lined up at wide receiver, Daley went into motion and took the jet sweep handoff from Miguele up the sideline and down to the Riverview one-yard line, punching it in for another touchdown on the next play.
The Cougars’ defense remained stout and received the benefit of a short field as they started their next drive inside Sharks territory once again. On the first play of the drive, Miguele fired downfield to Gines who had escaped his coverage and was left wide open over the middle of the field for one final touchdown that extended the Durant lead to 42-7 as they headed into the locker room for halftime.
The two teams played under a running clock for the second half, with Riverview adding another touchdown in the third quarter and Durant tacking on a late field goal to solidify a convincing 45-13 final.
Following a 5-5 record in 2020, the Cougars have now matched their win total from last year, doing so in just six games under first-year head coach Claybo Varnum. Next week Durant will have the opportunity to reach six wins in a season for the first time since going 7-4 in 2017.
The Cougars have one more game against King High School next Friday before opening up district play in the Redman Cup against Plant City on Oct. 15.