Tigers bubbling with confidence after big win


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Archbishop Curley's defense may have been able to get a handle on Holy Trinity's Jashaun Corbin on this play, but that didn't stop the sophomore from scoring three touchdowns three different ways -- running, receiving and returning -- in a 48-13 Tigers victory Friday night.

VIERA VOICE Carl Kotala

It’s all starting to come together for the Holy Trinity Episcopal Academy football team.

Not only did the Tigers dominate visiting Archbishop Curley of Miami 48-13 Fright night for their sixth win in a row, they did it in such a way that head coach Nate Hooks Jr. believes the message he’s been trying to send to his players for a long time may finally be hitting home.

“We played great,” Hooks said. “The best thing about the game is, we’ve got confidence. I like that they’re starting to think that they’re good … and everything starts with a thought.

“Since I’ve been here, I’ve been trying to change their feeling their thought about how good they are. Best thing about this was their execution, and their belief. It’s starting to show up on the scoreboard, and in the wins.”

That wasn’t the only piece of good news Hooks and the Tigers received Friday night.

Holy Trinity (6-1, 1-0) clinched a playoff spot when Melbourne Central Catholic lost to John Carroll. The Tigers will host John Carroll on Oct. 30 with the Class 3A, District 6 championship at stake. Holy Trinity has not won a district title since 2004.

The Tigers will certainly have momentum on their side, particularly if they can beat Lake Highland Prep next week.

Archbishop Curley was simply no match for a Holy Trinity offense led by sophomore Jashaun Corbin, who scored on a 70-yard run, a 39-yard pass from quarterback Joc Perry and a 90-yard kickoff return.

“I think we played really well,” Perry said. “Everything started to click tonight. …The linemen were blocking. We were getting the holes.

“And when they did key to Jashaun, other people were taking it and running their hardest. We were spreading it around a lot.”

They were indeed.

With Archbishop Curley determined to contain Corbin, it opened things up for a 1-yard TD run by Perry, a 33-yard scoring pass from Perry to Tay Griffin and a pair of touchdown runs by eighth-grader – that’s right, eighth-grader – Larry Hill.

“The best thing about Jashaun and producing the way he’s been doing is it opens it up for everyone else,” Hooks said. “You can put seven or eight (in the box) to stop him if you want to … gifted players are great for others, whether they know it or not.”

As well as the Holy Trinity offense played, the defense was stout as well, shutting down the Archbishop Curley running game for most of the night.

Senior Hunter Altman had a huge first half, recovering a fumble and making numerous tackles for the Tigers, who also got a strong game from Jaden Gonzalez.

Holy Trinity was working on a shutout until Archbishop Curley’s Aaron Ashe recovered a fumble and returned it 55 yards for a touchdown with just over nine minutes to play. Ashe would score again on a 60-yard catch and run after the Tigers had made a number of substitutions.

But this one was never in doubt. Holy Trinity scored on five of its first six possessions and much of the second half was played with a running clock.

While it’s nice for the Tigers to know there will be a playoff spot waiting for them at the end of the regular season, they have a much higher goal in mind.

And it’s going to take a lot of confidence and belief in themselves to get there.

“(The MCC loss) puts us in the playoffs, but that’s not what I’m going to preach for the next two weeks,” Hooks said. “It’s winning the district title. That would be big for the school, big for the players (and) big for the Holy Trinity Community. I want them to feel that.”