It had been one decade for team, and two decades for another, since their school’s last FHSAA Football state title.
But on Thursday at Camping World Stadium in Orlando, Madison County won the Class 1A state title, its first football championship since it won the 2A state title in 2007, and Raines (Jacksonville) won the Class 4A state title, its first trophy since winning it all in 1997.
In the Class 1A state championship game, an upset seemed to be in the making in the first half, as James Shores’ 41-yard field goal came on the final play of the first half gave unranked Blountstown (11-2) a 17-14 lead. But in the second half, Madison County’s Teryon Henderson had TD runs of 2 and 67 yards, putting him over 200 yards on the night, as the Cowboys (14-0) would rally for a 35-20 win.
In the Class 4A state championship game, one marred by penalties and sloppy play early, Raines also rallied to win, joining the team two decades ago as the only Duval County public school teams to win state. Raines (13-1) knocked off defending state champion Cocoa, 13-10, to win its first state football title since 1997.
The Vikings led 6-3 at the half, scoring first on a 72-yard TD run by junior Brandon Marshall with 1:22 to play in the opening quarter.
Cocoa (11-2) took the lead at 10-6 on a 2-yard TD run around right end by Willie Gaines with 9:06 to play in the game, only to have the Vikings (13-1) reclaim the momentum when Ivory Durham threw an 8-yard TD pass to Kamaree Noble with 5:41 to play.
Friday & Saturday’s championship schedule:
Friday, Dec. 8
Class 2A: Champagnat (8-2) vs. University Christian (Jacksonville) (10-2), 10 a.m.
Class 5A: Baker County (Glen St. Mary) (13-1) vs. Plantation American Heritage (12-0), 3 p.m.
Class 6A: Miami Northwestern (11-2) vs. Armwood (14-0), 8 p.m.
Saturday, Dec. 9
Class 3A: Oxbridge Academy (10-1) vs. Chaminade-Madonna (10-2), 10 a.m.
Class 7A: Bartram Trail (St. Johns) (11-3) vs. Venice (13-1), 3 p.m.
Class 8A: Delray Beach Atlantic (12-1) vs. Dr. Phillips (12-2), 8 p.m.