HIALEAH, FL – Winning cures a multitude of ills.
Looking to get the sour taste of a six-point loss to Louisburg College this past weekend out of its mouth, ASA Miami was able to unleash a week's worth of frustration on visiting Nation Christian Prep Saturday in a 63-3 drubbing at Ted Hendricks Stadium.
After Nation Christian capped its opening drive of the day with a 27-yard field goal, the Silver Storm (4-4) scored 63 unanswered points – dominating the undermanned Lions (who only traveled from Port St. Lucie, Florida with 18 available players) and forcing officials to shorten the second half and play with a running clock.
ASA Miami head coach Chris Boden said that despite the lopsided nature of Saturday's game, his team was able to pull some positives out of the easy victory.
"Games like this – against teams like this – are what they are," Boden began. "
"But it's live action against a different team – so it's work for us. One of the good things about today was the fact that we were able to play a lot of guys…guys that may not have gotten as many reps against another junior college opponent. Overall, I feel like the offense executed, the defense executed, special teams executed, and we have something to build off of as we head to Georgia Military [College] next week."
Offensively, ASA Miami only ran 27 total plays but they made the most of them.
Sophomore quarterback Matt Winzeler had an efficient day, completing 7 of 8 passes for 108 yards and three touchdowns – including a pretty 35-yard loft to receiver Freddie Pinder in the corner of the end zone to put the Silver Storm up 14-3 at the start of the second quarter.
Winzeler connected with three different receivers for touchdowns Saturday – Pinder, Kedrick Greene, and DeVarens Valcin – as he was easily able to find open receivers thanks to solid protection from his offensive line.
Greene and Ellex Davis tied for the team-high with three receptions each, while Greene also scored on a 107-yard kickoff return which put the Silver Storm up 49-3 just seconds into the third quarter.
ASA's O-Line also paved the way for 171 total rushing yards Saturday. Even without the services of leading rusher Evan Burgess, the Silver Storm was able to consistently gain chunks of yards on the ground – led by Julian Robinson's 67 yards on just four carries.
Jacob Frazier added 31 yards on the ground for ASA Miami, Treven Worthen chipped in with 28 yards and a pair of fourth-quarter touchdowns, Isaiah Grim added 19 and backup quarterback Eddie Yearby weaved his way through the Lions defense for a 26-yard touchdown in the third quarter.
ASA Miami's defense flexed its muscle against the prep school postgraduate team Saturday, too. The Silver Storm D recorded a pair of sacks, six tackles for loss, recovered a fumble and intercepted three passes.
Defensive backs Sydney Sheppard, Tomas Ward, and Darrell Malone all stepped in front of Danny Caruso passes, while the Nation Christian Prep quarterback completed just 11 of his 30 throws for 92 yards.
"We came in after the Louisburg game ready to work," Boden said of his team's performance. "Sometimes a team will come in down, hurting, feelings hurt, and not have a good week of practice after a loss like that. It was the opposite for us. The kids came in locked in ready to work, the coaches were ready to go – and as a head coach that's what you want to see. It's a good group of guys and a good group of coaches."
ASA Miami will be looking to capture its first win against another junior college team this season next week when it travels to Milledgeville, Georgia to take on Georgia Military College, who defeated the Silver Storm 35-7 a month ago.
The 28-point margin doesn't tell the story of the first meeting between the two teams, as ASA trailed just 14-7 at halftime and was in position to tie the game early in the third quarter before a turnover derailed the drive and ultimately the game.
Because of that, Boden is confident that his team can stand toe-to-toe with the Bulldogs.
"The last game against [Georgia Military], our offense moved the ball well," Boden said. "Our issue last game is that when we get into the red zone, we have to come away with points. We put together a lot of 10-plus-play drives, the thing is finishing off those drives and coming away with touchdowns. The kids are excited about it, the coaches are excited about it, and we know how important of a game it is for us."