Monday, September 17, 2012

Prep football: Manatee stays atop MaxPreps' national poll

photo by John Lembo
 The Miami Central Rockets couldn't push Manatee into the loss column.
They also couldn't push them off the top of MaxPreps Xcellent 25 National Football Rankings, which was unveiled Monday.
Manatee defeated Central 44-34 on Friday at Hawkins Stadium to stay No.1, which is where MaxPreps ranked the Hurricanes (3-0) heading into the season.
The win helped Manatee hop a spot in the latest ESPN 25 Power Rankings, where the Canes are ranked second behind California's Santa Margarita Catholic.
USA Today and Rivals will announce their updated rankings later in the week.
Central (1-2) is unranked by MaxPreps but has opened the season against three national powerhouses - Grayson (Ga.), Miami's Booker T. Washington and Manatee.
The Rockets began the year ranked tops in the nation by USA Today.
"That's probably as athletic of a team as we've ever played against," Manatee coach Joe Kinnan said Friday night. "They have some phenomenal atheltes...They weren't ranked No.1 in the nation at the beginning of the year by USA Today for nothing. They've still got the same players.
"I told (Central) coach (Telly) Lockette we were in the same spot exactly a year ago - we were 1-2, we lost to (Marlyand's Our Lady of )Good Counsel who ended up fourth in the nation and (New Jersey's Don Bosco Prep) who won it. (The Rockets) have lost to us and Grayson, who probably now one and two in the nation."
Manatee wound up winning the Class 7A state championship last year.
The Hurricanes are off Friday and head to Southeast next week.

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