The Rams' defense scored 20 points to set the tone in a 37-7 regional quarterfinal victory
After 70 seconds of play, Riverview led Lake Nona 14-0.
And that was before its offense had even touched the football.
The defense provided all the scoring host Riverview (9-2) would need against Lake Nona (7-4) in Friday’s 8A regional quarterfinal, a 37-7 drubbing. The Rams intercepted Lions quarterback Conner Johnson six times, including three they ran back for touchdowns — all before halftime. Riverview’s defense added a safety on a Johnson intentional grounding to score 20 points in all, outdoing the team’s offense.
“We don’t see many teams that throw the ball as much as they are,” Riverview head coach Josh Smithers said. “So our DBs, linebackers were really fired up and excited, and our D-line to get after a passer.”
The Rams, who have won eight straight games, will host Steinbrenner in the regional semifinals at 7:30 p.m. Friday Nov. 15.
Junior defensive back Sambo Ung led the team with three interceptions and two touchdowns.
“Green grass, daylight,” Ung said. “That’s all I see. I was looking at (the quarterback), like before the play, he gave me a little look, so I already know, ‘I’m (gonna) jump this route.’”
Senior Jayden Cray scored the first pick-six 1 minute, 1 second into the game (Ung followed with his first on Lake Nona’s next play from scrimmage nine seconds later). Senior Matt Garcia and sophomore James Simmons grabbed the other two interceptions.
Senior Sean White walked into the end zone on a 4-yard quarterback keeper 3:17 into the game to extend Riverview’s lead to 21-0. He also threw a long touchdown pass to sophomore Omari Hayes shortly before the end of the first quarter that put the Rams up 37-0.
Lions senior Reshawn Varnado scored a short rushing touchdown midway through the fourth quarter to prevent the shutout.