North Fort Myers junior running back Zaquandre White put up career-high, Noel Devine-like numbers, leading the Red Knights to a 62-14 victory on the road at Ida Baker High.
White, who verbally committed to Florida State University, rushed for 275 yards and four touchdowns on eight carries, averaging 34.3 yards per carry. Devine, Lee County’s all-time leading rusher, graduated from North Fort Myers in 2006.
“Two hundred and seventy five on eight carries?” White said, when told afterward of his statistics. His touchdowns were on runs of 5, 65, 97 and 34 yards. “That’s amazing. I thought I was close to 300. It’s just a blessing. My line got me open tonight. We came out focused.”
White’s defensive teammates also tormented the Bulldogs, returning four interceptions for touchdowns and a fumble for a score as well.
With three minutes and 46 seconds remaining in the second quarter, North senior Freddie Johnson returned an interception 40 yards for a score on the first play after teammate Lucious Stanley returned a fumble 37 yards for a touchdown. Just prior to that, White scored his first touchdown.
Just like that, the Red Knights, who had been tied 7-7 with 5:02 remaining in the second quarter, scored 21 points in a span of 33 seconds.
“It’s tough when their best offense is our offense,” said Ida Baker coach Brian Conn, whose team fell to 3-6 overall and 1-3 in District 6A-10 competition. North Fort Myers improved to 3-5 overall and 1-3 in the district, but both teams have been eliminated from postseason play.
“Obviously, they’ve got a guy who can go at any second,” Conn said of White. “Then they started snapping it right to him. That made it a lot more difficult. The last guy we faced like that was Noel Devine.”
White had help on his 65-yard touchdown in the third quarter from Johnson, who blocked a Baker defender out of the way.
Johnson (40 yards), Micario Stanley (65 yards), Brandon King (82 yards) and Elijah Jones (55 yards) each returned interceptions for touchdowns, and Lucious Stanley returned his fumble recovery 37 yards for a score.
“Those guys are that talented,” North Fort Myers coach Earnest Graham said of his defensive backfield. He credited defensive coordinator Mack Mitchell. “Mack put them in position to do those things.”
Ida Baker receiver Luke Endsley caught five passes for 115 yards, including a 53-yard touchdown. He also scored on a 2-yard run. Teammate Brennan Williams rushed for 143 yards on 33 carries.
Connect with this reporter: David Dorsey (Facebook), @DavidADorsey (Twitter).
North Fort Myers 7 | 27 | 28 | 0 | FINAL 62
Ida Baker 0 | 14 | 0 | 0 | FINAL 14
NFM: Micario Stanley 65 INT return (Max Ferris kick)
IB: Luke Endsley 2 run (David Montoya kick)
NFM: Zaquandre White 5 run (Ferris kick)
NFM: Lucious Stanley 37 fumble return (Ferris kick)
NFM: Freddie Johnson 40 INT return (Ferris kick)
NFM: White 65 run (kick failed)
IB: Endsley 53 pass from Jordan Diggs (Montoya kick)
NFM: White 97 run (Ferris kick)
NFM: Brandon King 82 INT return (Ferris kick)
NFM: White 34 run (Ferris kick)
NFM: Elijah Jones 55 INT return (Ferris kick)