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Bobcats topple Peniel Warriors to improve season to 4-5

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By Ben Calhoun

The first real football weather of the season seemed to invigorate the Bobcats of Robert F. Munroe Day School as they clicked on all cylinders en route to a 53-14 victory over the Peniel Baptist Academy Warriors of Palatka. With the win, the Bobcats improved their season record to 4-5.

“This was one of those nights where everything came together offensively,” said Bobcat head coach Joe Striplin.  “Obviously, we were able to pass the ball pretty well, but we also averaged 5 yards per carry on the ground.  We like our momentum heading into the last game with Oak Hall.”

On the night, the Bobcats once again had a host of stellar offensive performances.  Leading the way was freshman quarterback Dustin Watson, who was 16 of 22 passing for 270 yards and five touchdowns.  Watson also added a rushing touchdown.  Fletcher Vaughn was the recipient of two of Watson’s touchdown strikes.  He finished the night with 75 yards receiving on five receptions.  

Daniel Meeks scored twice (five receptions, 25 yards) and Matt Sampson once (two receptions, 64 yards) as the Bobcats’ air attack was dominant.

Striplin was also pleased with the effort of his defense, which held the visiting Warriors at bay for most of the evening.

“They have a great running back (Shovantae Cohen) and we were really concerned with keeping him contained,” said Striplin.  “He got loose for a couple of long scores but we were able to keep him bottled-up for the most part.  We had guys flying around out there tonight, playing with a purpose.  I’m glad to see us finally getting to this point defensively.”

The defense was led by linebackers Trey Pack (seven tackles) and Matt Carter (six tackles).  Defensive back Fletcher Vaughn also stood out with three interceptions.  Linebacker Jacob Jones chipped-in with four stops, but also delivered the big hit of the night, as he leveled a Warrior running back to stop an early drive.

The Bobcats are hitting their stride at just the right moment with Oak Hall looming.  Last year, the Eagles embarrassed the Bobcats on Halloween night 82-6.  The outcome still lingers and the players are looking forward to the opportunity show that they are much improved.

“We’ve had that game highlighted,” said Striplin.  “We watched them play Aucilla during our off week.  They’re a good team and move the ball pretty well offensively.  It’ll be important for us to control the ball, but we won’t change what we’ve been successful with.  We shouldn’t have any trouble getting up for this one.”

Kickoff is slated for 7:30 p.m. in Gainesville against Hall Oak Friday.