After a cagey start, Manatee High’s offense clicked into gear just before halftime Friday.
The Hurricanes doubled their lead in a 1 minute, 14 second span before enacting a second-half running clock to beat crosstown rival Southeast, 49-0 at Joe Kinnan Field at Hawkins Stadium.
Manatee (8-2) turns its attention to Sunday’s Florida High School Athletic Association bracket show to find out who it will host in next week’s regional quarterfinal.
Southeast heads into the offseason after an 0-10 season.
Friday’s game between the two longtime rivals began with Southeast’s Ostave Dorvilus taking Tarquez Thomas’ pass 56 yards into Manatee’s red zone.
But the Canes forced a field goal attempt, which was blocked after a bad snap.
“That’s been the thing of the season, we didn’t execute,” Southeast head coach Brett Timmons said. “A play here, a drop there, a penalty here. It’s just been a microcosm of the season.”
On the subsequent possession, Trayvon Pinder capped the 11-play drive with the first of his three rushing touchdowns.
Manatee quarterback Andrew Heidel and wide receiver Bon Bean Jr. connected on a 79-yard completion early in the second quarter that set up the Canes’ second score.
Then with 1 minute, 14 seconds remaining in the first half, Bean caught passes of 21 and 23 yards, respectively, from Heidel to set up Pinder’s 11-yard touchdown run to extend the lead to 21-0.
Manatee cornerback Daron Jean snatched his second interception seconds later allowing Pinder to score on a 2-yard run with time expiring in the first half.
In the second half, Bean made a diving 36-yard touchdown grab to start the running clock. After that, Manatee head coach Jacquez Green got a glimpse into the future with multiple junior varsity players getting playing time.
One of those was freshman running back Keith Smith, who tallied a 16-yard touchdown to cap the Canes’ scoring for the night.
“He’s probably the best youth league kid around here,” Green said. “The freshman class is probably the best freshman class I’ve had since I’ve coached high school football. ... We’ve got big kids and we got a lot of talent. We just got to develop those guys.”
Bean Jr. finished with seven catches for 186 yards and a touchdown. Heidel completed 18 of 23 passes for 328 yards.
Manatee’s win is expected to lock up the No. 2 seed in the Class 4S-Region 4 playoffs. However, the Canes’ final seeding and first-round playoff matchup gets revealed Sunday morning.
“I feel confident,” Green said about his team heading into the playoffs. “I think we’ve got a good team. I think the two games we lost, we could have played a lot better in those games. Left a lot of plays out there. I don’t think anyone wants to see us in the playoffs at the same time. So I feel good about where we are at.”
Those weren’t the only teams playing Friday.
Here’s a look at the Week 11 games with scores:
Palmetto 42, Cape Coral Ida Baker 7
Tampa Robinson 27, Braden River 20
Sarasota Booker 42, Lakewood Ranch 13
Cardinal Mooney 50, Bayshore 0
Parrish Community 43, Lakeland George Jenkins 6
IMG Academy White 42, Sarasota 13
IMG Academy National 47, St. Thomas More (Oakdale, Connecticut) 0
Saint Stephen’s 14, Cape Coral Oasis 7 (overtime)
Swipe below for scores involving Bradenton-area programs: