Pat O'Brien shows off a different offense and defense in Sickles' 14-7 victory over Leto.
By FRANK PASTOR
© St. Petersburg Times, published May 25, 2001
GIBSONTON -- Pat O'Brien didn't waste any time stepping out of his brother's shadow.
O'Brien, named Sickles' coach after his brother, Shannon, left to become an assistant at Armwood, unveiled a new look in Sickles' 14-7, come-from-behind victory over Leto in a spring jamboree Thursday at Riverview.
O'Brien scrapped his brother's pass-oriented offense for a power running attack. On defense, he switched to a variation of Riverview's five-man front. He no longer two-platoons players.
But the most obvious change was the one on the scoreboard.
Bryan Dalton caught a 57-yard touchdown pass from Chris O'Donnell on a fake punt, and Preston Nelson leaped to snare Pat Carr's 9-yard scoring pass with 1:14 remaining as Sickles set the tone for O'Brien's first season.
"It's halftime," the former King coach and Sickles defensive coordinator said. "That's what you do. Go in at halftime and make adjustments."
Gavin Williams recovered two fumbles to lead Sickles' defense. He also caught a two-point conversion pass.
In the second game, Avious Steadman rushed for 68 yards and a touchdown as Riverview spoiled Bob Gries' debut in a 14-6 victory over Gaither.
After Riverview's Darren Glass recovered a Maurice Cobb fumble early in the first quarter, Paulus Jonathans scored on a 4-yard run to put the Sharks ahead 7-0.
A 9-yard punt later in the quarter gave Riverview possession at the Gaither 19. After Jonathans rushed 15 yards up the middle, Steadman scored from 1 yard out on the first play of the second quarter.
Richard Woodbury's two-point conversion run gave the Sharks a 14-0 lead.
"I'm very happy with our fullbacks. I'm very happy with our line, and I'm very happy with our quarterback," Riverview coach Alex Albert said.
"I'm just a happy guy right now."
A Riverview defense that featured a completely revamped front line held Gaither scoreless until Craig Barber caught a 5-yard touchdown pass from Phillip Beauchamp on the final play of the game.