Mike Ferrara-Weed leads East Ridge to 4-0, but tough district teams lie in wait
QB Mike Ferrara-Weed of Clermont East Ridge has the Knights out to a 4-0 start. (CHRIS HAYS/ORLANDO SENTINEL)
Last year that sentence could not have taken on the present perfect tense, as in still counting.
"Yeah, that's as many TDs as I had last year," Weed said. "This year I got six already and only two picks. I feel like I've gotten a lot better and I don't plan on slowing down."
And neither do the Knights, thanks to the leadership of their hard-nosed, 6-foot-2, 210-pound quarterback, who can go deep with his big arm or tuck it and bulldoze his way to a first down and more, if needed.
The East Ridge players talked during spring football about the importance of coming together more as a team. With so many of the returning players as seniors . Weed leads the offense, with help of West Virginia commit WR Dante Campbell, senior WR Tereseo "TO" Guevara and junior RB Randy Bergan, just to name a few.
The defense, which is allowing just over11 points a game, is led by LB Joe Voigt and DL Brian Mills, helped out by speedy senior DBs Nehamiah Coward and Kennar Johnson, and junior OLBs/DEs Justin Horton and Khalil Pierson.
"The defensive has been huge for us," Weed said. "They're tearing it up."
But don't sell the offense short. The Knights are averaging almost 28 points a game and Weed has his six TDs to go along with a completion rate of 57 percent (34-60) for 610 yards. He's thrown only two interceptions, as well. Weed is averaging 152 yards a game.
"Sure, things are going good right now," Weed said. "I feel I've improved a lot but I wouldn't say I was satisfied ... none of us are satisfied."
But they can get closer to being satisfied with a win over West Orange in another tough district game Friday night. The Knights still have Apopka and Olympia on the 6A, District 5 slate, as well.
Chris Hays is the Sentinel's recruiting coverage coordinator and can be reached at email@example.com.