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For their own good
Fifty years ago, they were screwed-up kids sent to the Florida School for Boys to be straightened out. But now they are screwed-up men, scarred by the whippings they endured. Read the story and see a video and portrait gallery.
Gamble, a shutdown corner, loves to bait quarterbacks into throwing his way.
That's when Gamble was moved from corner to free safety, and the 6-foot-2, 165-pound senior responded with a career game.
In the Spongers' 14-7 upset over previously undefeated Countryside, Gamble racked up 14 tackles, two interceptions and two touchdown receptions.
The senior's biggest plays came in the clutch. With Countryside driving near Tarpon's goal line with the game tied and one minute to go, Gamble made a diving interception of L.D. Crow in the end zone (his second pick of the quarter). Then, with 12 seconds left, Gamble caught a 40-yard touchdown to win the game.
Gamble, who said he has run a 4.4 40, admired former Pro Bowl corner Deion "Prime Time" Sanders growing up. While Gamble enjoyed the safety experiment, he is being recruited by several SEC schools as a corner.
"I just love hitting people," Gamble said. "And making plays."
- JOE SMITH, Times staff writer
JOCK SANDERS, St. Petersburg Catholic tailback
Clearwater Central Catholic coach Mike Jalazo said he is glad Sanders will graduate this school year.
After all, Sanders, a 5-foot-9 slasher, has put up his best games against the Barons' big Catholic school rival.
That includes Friday's spectacular performance, when Sanders amassed 330 all-purpose yards - scoring in every way. Sanders, a threat every time he touches the ball, opened the game with an 18-yard fumble recovery for a touchdown. Then, minutes later, he showed his speed and strength with a 30-yard run.
The West Virginia-bound Sanders then dazzled the senior night crowd with a 99-yard kickoff return for a touchdown.
Under interim coach Mike Lynch, who loves "smashmouth" football, Sanders likely will see more 20-25 carry nights like he had Friday.
"He's always been a playmaker," SPC senior receiver Andrew Harris said of Sanders. "But this was a big breakout game for him."