By Tamas Mondovics
Expectations were high for the much-favored Durant Cougars varsity football team during a vital home conference game against Class 7A, District 9 rival Bloomingdale Bulls.
Since, there could only be one winner during the final district game of the season,the victory rightfully went to Bloomingdale (6-3, 5-1) led by program head coach Max Warner.
From the start, Durant (6-3, 3-3) showed its expected strength scoring the fist TD, but Bloomingdale kept its winning momentum and was not to be taken for granted.
The Bulls fired back without mercy that included Bulls senior quarterback Tyler Hunter connecting with junior Terrel Ferrell for 12 yards to give the Bulls a 14-6 lead before the half.
Bloomingdale returned to the field flexing even more muscle, which was obvious when an interception from Jalen Jackson led to a 35-yard gain and was capped off with a 6-yard touchdown run from Charles Montgomery. The play propelled the Bulls to a 21-6 lead with less than 10 minutes in the third quarter.
The Cougars managed to rally in the fourth, scoring nine points, but fell shorter of a chance to catch up with their rival for the opportunity to advance post season.
While Cougars head coach Mike Gottman had every reason to expect a win it was Warner who could proudly declare that the victory was the biggest for the program especially with the added bragging rights of holding Durant under 15 points.
As an unfortunate outcome of the game, Durant also lost its star running Cameron Myers for the season after the young player fractured his collarbone.
The 2017 Class 7A District 9 ended with Tampa Bay Tech leading the pack followed by Bloomingdale, East Bay, Durant, Plant City, Strawberry Crest, and Lennard.
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