On the eve of its biggest game of the season, the Braden River High boys basketball moved up to the fifth in the latest Florida Association of Basketball Coaches (FABC) Class 7A ranking
The Pirates (20-4) were seventh in the previous poll. But all of that won't mean much if they don't beat Punta Gorda Charlotte (16-110 tonight in a class 7A-District 11 semifinal round game.
Braden River defeated Charlotte both times they met during the regular season, earning a 42-41 victory on the road and then winning handily at home 60-40.
The game is at Braden River where the Pirates are 9-1 this season. It bodes well for this young program that is gunning for its second straight district championship, but head coach Matt Nesser is taking nothing for granted.
"Defense is the key. We are a blue collar team and have to play good defense if we are going to win," he said.