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HomeSportsFootballHigh School Football Kicks Off Now: Central

High School Football Kicks Off Now: Central

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Storylines:
After finally snapping their 24-game losing streak in a win over the Lake Weir Hurricanes, the Bears saw tremendous growth in year two under Coach Pusateri. Central went .500 in district play and their overall record, highlighted by a 44-8 beatdown of the Anclote Sharks during a three-game winning streak. With the previous winless years in the rearview mirror, the Blue and White will look for their first winning season since 2016. Coach Pusateri is looking for big things from his quarterback, who amassed roughly 1700 passing and 200 rushing yards as a junior. Having lost Caden Bergantino’s 800 yards of production, Central will look for at least one of the trio of Poole, Davis, or Valerio-Estevez to “have huge seasons” in his absence.

The Bears’ head coach also expects a leap forward from his defense this season. Led by MLB/FB Ryan Wood, DE Steven Ramirez-Diaz, and DE/T Hayden Taylor, the Navy and Silver should expect growth when it comes to tackles for loss and quarterback hurries in 2023. Despite exceeding the national average for sacks (13.3) with 15 of their own, the Bears’ defense failed to muster a single TFL or QB hurry last season. Improving these numbers, even modestly, could help the offense generate more drives and more points by way of complimentary football.

Team Overview:
Head Coach: Jim Pusateri
Previous Season Record: 5-5
’21 – ’22 Season Record: 0-10
Stadium: Bears Den

Bears 2023 Schedule:
9/1 Central at Mount Dora Hurricanes at 7:30
9/8 Home vs. Indian Rocks Christian Eagles at 7:30
9/15 Central at Anclote Sharks at 7:30 (District)
9/22 Central at Wesley Chapel Wildcats at 7:30
9/29 Home vs. Hudson Cobras at 7:30
10/6 Home vs. Palatka Panthers at 7:30
10/13 Home vs. Tenoroc Titans at 7:30
10/20 Home vs. Nature Coast Tech Sharks at 7:30
10/27 Central vs. Weeki Wachee Hornets at 7:30 (District)
11/3 Central vs. Umatilla Bulldogs at 7:30

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Players to watch for: QB Braden Joyner, WR Sebastian Valerio-Estevez, WR Emaurien Davis, WR Talyn Poole

Newcomers: WR Jadarius Wilson, RB Timothy Gaynor

Game to watch: The Bears host Indian Rocks Christian on September 8. An early season win over a team that earned a 9-2 record a season ago could go a long way in determining whether Central reaches six wins.

Thank you to our high school football kickoff sponsors, Shuayb Dental and 103.9 The Boot

Austyn Szempruch
Austyn Szempruch
Austyn Szempruch is a Graduate with Distinction, University of Florida College of Journalism and Communications. He's written numerous articles reporting on Florida Gators football, basketball, and soccer teams; the sports of rugby, basketball, professional baseball, hockey, and the NFL Draft. Prior to Hernando Sun he was a contributor to ESPN, Gainesville, FL and Gator Country Multimedia, Inc. in Gainesville, FL, and Stadium Gale.
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