Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Raines' Kids Are All Right; Vikings Rally from 10 Downto Beat Lee in Season Opener

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Raines' Kids Are All Right; Vikings Rally from 10 Downto Beat Lee in Season Opener

Article excerpt

Byline: Justin Barney

The Raines football team lost so much talent to graduation that no one gave the new guys much of a chance.

Bad idea.

The Vikings erased a double-digit deficit in the final 6 1/2 minutes, getting two long touchdown passes from Ivory "HJ" Durham IV and a game-sealing interception from Noble Tribune to shock visiting Lee 32-28 on Friday night.

It was a fitting finish for the Vikings, who went to the Class 4A state championship game last year, yet graduated six Super 24 selections and too much talent to count.

But authoring a comeback to beat arguably the hottest team of the preseason in the fashion that it did raised the bar on what Raines is expecting from itself. When Tribune intercepted a deflected pass from Derrick Jones in the end zone with 1 minute and 21 seconds to play, it made a statement to the rest of the area.

The new guys will be just fine, and maybe even better than that.

"They believe in the process. Tonight showed a lot of character," Raines coach Deran Wiley said. "We lost a lot of guys [to graduation]. These guys showed their heart. I think this can catapult us to something good."

Quiet in the second half and down 28-18, Raines needed something from its offense that had gone dormant. Enter junior quarterback Durham. He'd thrown seven consecutive incompletions and had taken a sack when he lined up under center with 6:21 to go when one of the best matchups of the night happened.

Lee was in zone coverage with Willie Wright lined up in the slot. He slipped past the safety and Durham's pass hit him in stride with no one around. Durham finished 15-of-33 for 336 yards and three touchdowns passing, hitting eight receivers. He added 79 yards on the ground.

"Calm down, relax, lead my team to victory," Durham said of his mindset late in the game. "I believe in the team. My offensive line was doing great. I just had to settle down."

Durham's winning score came less than three minutes later, a quick strike to George Webb, who shook off one defender after a short catch, then got around another to finish off a 50-yard catch and run.

"I'm just thinking, 'Make a play, it's time to come back,'" said Webb, whose catch was his only one of the game. …

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