The Lakewood Ranch High football team stumbled in its season opener Aug. 25.
The Lakewood Ranch High football team knew what it was up against — it just didn’t have a way of gauging the speed and elusiveness of Tampa Jesuit running back Malik Davis.
Without anyone on the Mustangs sideline capable of matching Davis’ speed in practice, Lakewood struggled to contain the Tigers senior running back, who rushed for four first-half touchdowns, as Tampa Jesuit rolled to a 39-3 victory Aug. 25 in the season opener for both teams.
Davis, who already has 30 college scholarship offers, rushed for nearly 200 yards in a little more than a half. Last season, Lakewood held Davis, who rushed for 2,337 yards and 28 touchdowns, to his lowest output of the season with 71 yards.
Lakewood had its chances early in the first quarter against a Tigers team that reached the state semifinals in 2015. The Mustangs forced a pair of first-quarter turnovers, but were only able to turn them into three points. Sophomore kicker Travis Freeman connected on a 33-yard field goal for Lakewood’s only points of the game.
The Mustangs return home Sept. 2 to face Bayshore. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m.