Tigers hoping to improve on last year’s historic season


Holy Trinity running back Larry Hill, who has more than 20 scholarship offers, will help lead a Tigers offense that is loaded with skill players.

Caroline Layman

How do you follow up the best season in school history?

By topping it, of course. And that’s exactly what the Holy Trinity football team is hoping to do after winning the first playoff game in program history last year.

“I think last year’s success made us even better for this year because it made us (want to) do better than what we did last year,” senior running back Larry Hill said.

“The buzz is kind of the same as we all (want to) do our job just like last year, but at the same time, we know what we’re capable of if we all do our job.”

The Tigers, who open the season with at least four consecutive road games while waiting for construction of the Tiger Athletic Complex to be completed, believe they have the speed to give opponents fits.

“We’re loaded at the skill positions,” Holy Trinity coach Nate Hooks Jr. said. “I think that’s no secret. We have six D-I guys at the skill positions.

“But what most people don’t know is it’s the best O-line since I’ve been here.”

The six players Hooks referred to with Division I offers include Hill;  quarterback Ja’Lon Hudgins; slot/running back Kevin Chandler; wide receiver Demetrius “Meech” Robinson; wide receiver Trey Palmer and wide receiver James BlackStrain.

Ranked No. 179 on ESPN’s Junior 300 list, BlackStrain is still recovering from a knee injury sustained during basketball season. There is no timetable for his return, but if the Tigers can get him back, it will add to an already explosive offense that also features Carlos Estronza in the slot.

The offensive line will be led by four-year starter Rico Frazier, along with transfer Nick Greene; Joe BlackStrain; Thomas Wadsworth; Benji Nicks; Rod Thomas and Timmy Nunno.

Defensively, the Tigers plan to line up with Frazier, Joe BlackStrain, Greene and Nicks on the line, Estronza, Nunno and Palmer at linebacker and Jonathan Bailey, Hudgins, Jadon Gowins and Chandler in the secondary.

In addition to going deeper into the playoffs, the Tigers will have a chance to show they’re one of the better programs in the county when they face Space Coast, Eau Gallie and Cocoa in the regular season.

“We have always felt that we should be higher ranked in the county and now (we’re going to) play some of those higher ranked teams and get a chance to really see and show how we stack up against them,” Hill said.

While Hooks said he wants his team to remember how good last season felt, he has reminded his players this is a new year.

“We’ll find out what kind of program we have coming off of the playoff season,” he said.