Wednesday, February 22, 2012
CF Patriots 85, St. Johns River 69 (MBB)
The CF bench exploded for 51 points as the Patriots won their sixth straight game. Freshman forward Jordan Parks poured in a career high 18 points on 9-for-12 shooting, leading four double-figure scorers. Luis Jacobo scored 14 and reserves Jernell Hughes and Eugene McCrory scored 12 apiece.
Facing an unexpectedly stiff challenge from the last-place Vikings, it took all of the first half for the Patriots to gain some separation and build a 35-28 halftime edge. SJR closed in again soon after halftime before a deep CF squad pulled away for good.
Now tied at 9-2 with Santa Fe, CF (22-7, 9-2 MFC) is in the enviable position of controlling its own postseason destiny. Though a Santa Fe loss Saturday at St. Johns River will give the Patriots the conference title, CF can punch its own ticket with a victory Saturday at FSC-Jacksonville.
Should the Saints win and the Patriots lose Saturday, the Patriots will be forced into a single-elimination playoff for the MFC's second FCSAA State Tournament berth. That game would be at CF on Tuesday against either FSC-Jacksonville or Daytona State.
The eventual conference champion will face the runner-up of the Panhandle Conference in a state quarterfinal game March 7 in Marianna; the MFC runner-up will take on St. Petersburg, which has clinched the Suncoast Conference crown.