There were plenty of Friday night road warriors last weekend, who deserved a hero’s welcome when they returned home from their out-of-town games.
At the top of the list is Bayshore running back Dominic Everett, who rushed for 145 yards to spark the Bruins to a 14-7 victory over DeSoto.
A week earlier, Everett was airlifted to Bayfront Medical Center after taking a hit to his lower back that left him unable to move for an extended period.
As he lay on the ground there was concern about him being unable to walk again and talk of possible paralysis. He was put on stretcher and carried to a helicopter.
The chance of him playing football the next week seemed like an impossibility, but there he was carrying the ball 29 times in what might have been the most courageous performance of any Manatee County player Friday night.
There were others who earned a hero's status.
With their top running backs unable to play, quarterbacks Myles Braxton-Johnson of Southeast and Jeren Kowalewski of Lakewood Ranch took their personal games to another level, albeit in a losing cause.
Braxton-Johnson took part in all three Southeast touchdowns and ran for a career high 77 yards on only 10 carries breaking numerous tackles in a gutty performance.
Kowaleski passed for 217 yards and two touchdowns and ran for another after running back McKenzie Hathaway, the fuel that drives the Mustangs offense, had to come out in the first quarter because of an illness. This is from a guy who has been geared to operate a run first offense all season.