The Pirates (5-3) suffered a loss Friday night to a county foe. The Fernandina Beach High School football team lost 36-31 to the host Hilliard Flashes (6-0).
“Congratulations to Hilliard,” said Jude Swearingen, head coach at FBHS. “They are a good team, and the ball bounced their way Friday night.”
Cameron Jacobs scored the first touchdown of the game. He reeled in a 24-yard pass from quarterback Cam Miller to put the Pirates up 6-0.
The teams exchanged touchdowns throughout the game. Thurmon Marques II scored a Pirate TD on a 78-yard kickoff return in the second quarter to put the Pirates up again 13-7.
Hilliard answered with a 1-yard run to take a 14-13 lead, but Jacobs struck again, scoring on a 28-yard pass from Miller. The Pirates led 20-14 at halftime.
Hilliard scored the lone touchdown in the third quarter to knot the score at 20-20.
Phil Tita kicked a 28-yard field goal in the final quarter, and the Pirates were on top again 23-20. Hilliard responded with a 65-yard TD pass to take a 28-23 lead. Miller’s 1-yard run for a TD handed the edge back to the Pirates, 31-28. Hilliard scored the game-winner on an 80-yard pass.
“It was a good game for us,” Hilliard coach John Pate said. “They’ve got a lot of talent, but we told our kids that the pressure was on because they are a 4-A team and we are a 1-A team.”
Miller was 3-of-11 for 72 yards, two touchdowns and an interception and, on the ground, he carried the ball 15 times for 89 yards and another TD. Khamari Barksdale rushed 18 times for 138 yards.
The Pirate defense was led by Ernest Cortez with six tackles and an assist. Josiah Rauls had four tackles and as many assists. Willie Coleman had three stops, and Brooks Rohe had two tackles and six assists. Kyle Lee had a tackle and seven assists, and A.J. West had one tackle and five assists. Caiden Sweat recorded seven assists.
“We will play better next Friday night,” Swearingen said.
The Pirates (5-3) travel to Jacksonville Friday to take on North Florida Educational Institute on its new field in Fernandina Beach High School’s 2020 regular season finale. Kickoff is slated for 7 p.m.