Buchholz High School quarterback Trace Johnson (#12) passes the ball just before being tackled during their game at Citizens Field on Friday, November 17, 2023. The undefeated Bobcats advance in the playoffs after beating the Sharks 34-21. (Sydney Johnson/ WRUF)

Buchholz Looks to Break Through to State Championship

The Buchholz Bobcats are set to face Lakeland in the Class 4S State Semifinals Friday night.

Most Recent Game Recap

The Bobcats haven’t lost a beat in the postseason after dominating during the regular season. The team defeated Bartram Trail 37-17 in the region final, securing their spot in the state semifinal. Buchholz has yet to lose this season, coming in with a 13-0 record.

Buchholz head coach Chuck Bell spoke highly of his team during Sports Scene Wednesday.

The Bobcats will have homefield advantage for the matchup on Friday. Additionally, the team has a 14 game win streak at home dating back to last season, and they have been incredibly strong in those matchups, winning by an average of 26.29 points.

Despite their win, head coach Chuck Bell emphasized that fixing the mistakes made on the field during this game will be key to defeating Lakeland.

Lakeland Dreadnaughts

While it can be challenging to carry over regular season success into the postseason, Lakeland did so with ease in their most recent matchup. They handily defeated Lake Minneola 77-48 on the road. This outcome may not have been surprising for the team, as they have won nine games this season by a margin of 21 points or more.

 D’marius Rucker had an explosive performance, gaining 17.4 yards per carry while recording 278 yards and two scores in the game. Markel Johnson, who had 111 yards and three touchdowns on just 11 carries, also played an important role in the Dreadnaughts’ playoff win.

The team has won four straight games and are currently averaging 47.8 points per game during that stretch. The Buchholz defense will have a tough task ahead against the defending 4S State Champions.

Upcoming Battle

Now, the two teams will go head-to-head Friday night at citizens field. Buchholz has won all of its home games this year, while Lakeland has won eight straight road games. Kickoff is at 7:30 p.m.


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