No. 2 IMG Academy overcomes mistakes, Carol City in preseason win

T.J. Pledger by Kim Klement, USA TODAY

No. 2 IMG Academy overcomes mistakes, Carol City in preseason win

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No. 2 IMG Academy overcomes mistakes, Carol City in preseason win

Miami commit Artur Sitkowski threw two touchdown passes and ran for a touchdown as No. 2 IMG Academy (Bradenton, Fla.) overcame early mistakes to defeat No. 20 Carol City (Miami Gardens) 41-22 in a preseason game Friday.

Two American Family Insurance ALL-USA defensive linemen for IMG, Nolan Smith II and Xavier Thomas, each had big second-half sacks.

The game was delayed twice by lightning. When it finally got underway, Carol City took a quick 7-0 lead on a 6-yard run by Camron Davis.

The Ascenders struggled early with the center-quarterback exchange, but Sitkowski tied the score at the end of the quarter on a 3-yard sneak following several Carol City penalties. Running back Noah Cain put IMG on top early in the second quarter off an 8-yard run. He also had a 15-yard run for a touchdown in the second half.

IMG’s lead didn’t last long as Carol City linebacker Yasir Abdullah intercepted Sitkowski on IMG’s next possession and ran it back 78 yards for a touchdown. A fake punt led to a 49-yard touchdown pass by IMG’s Aidan Swanson to Andre Cisco to put the Ascenders up 21-14 midway through the second quarter.

Sitkowski found Jalen Jordan with a 14-yard pass to the left corner of the end zone just before the half to put the Ascenders up 27-14. He also threw a fourth down, 34-yard touchdown pass in the fourth quarter to T.J. Pledger.

Carol City quarterback Legend Moore threw a late touchdown pass to end the game’s scoring.

IMG opens the regular season next Saturday against No. 7 Chandler (Ariz.) in a nationally televised game as part of the ESPN GEICO High School Kickoff.

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