Port St. Lucie (Fla.) Treasure Coast High School traveled to the Battle at the Beach given little to no chance of beating Florida powerhouse American Heritage — especially with the Plantation school looking to bounce back after losing to IMG Academy last weekend.
Thanks to the efforts of a former NFL player’s son, the seemingly impossible became reality.
Eden James, the son of four-time Pro Bowl running back Edgerrin James, rushed for 267 yards and two touchdowns as Treasure Coast pulled off a stunning 29-21 win over American Heritage on Saturday. James had his way with an American Heritage defense featuring numerous top recruits, ripping off runs of 53, 54 and 62 yards throughout the game.
“Man, he’s just a real special player,” Treasure Coast head coach Irvin Jones said postgame, per 247Sports. “We enjoyed those long runs, but to me, some of those short runs that got us first downs and moved the chains were even better. Just to see where he came from when he was younger to where he is now – it’s a beautiful thing.”
Treasure Coast was not originally on American Heritage’s 2021 schedule. Pat Surtain’s program was supposed to play Brookwood in the Battle at the Beach, but the Georgia school backed out of the matchup. Treasure Coast stepped in and agreed to play American Heritage on less than a month’s notice, setting the stage for James’ monster night and one of the biggest upsets high school football has seen in recent years.
“I couldn’t have done it without my teammates,” James said. “I had no idea I ran for that many [yards]. All you can do is thank the man above. I mean games like these, they aren’t won in just one event. They are won in the moments leading up to it. I think we were just really prepared and that’s just all Coach Jones.”