The regular season opener for the North Fort Myers Red Knights did not go as smoothly as coach Brian Makar might have wanted Friday night as the Cape Coral Seahawks made some big plays on offense and even bigger ones on defense en route to an easy 40-2 victory.
Even without senior captain and quarterback Trey Daniels, the Seahawks were able to move the ball and strike quickly.
Led by the running of junior tailback Eamon Smart, and the all purpose play of sophomore wideout Rasheen Bailey, Dylan Bontrager stepped in and competently ran the offense. The Seahawks struck first late in the first quarter.
An eight-play, 46-yard drive featured the power running of Smart, who rushed three times for 19 yards, and the receiving of senior Kyle Fischl, who caught two balls for 27 yards and a 17-yard touchdown.
The Red Knights were unable to move the ball in the second quarter and that is when Bailey took over.
The Seahawks' offensive line set up a middle screen for Bailey, who took the ball three steps to his left and left everyone behind on a 31-yard touchdown reception.
Again the Seahawks defense frustrated Knights quarterback Jake Duff and following a turnover on downs, Bailey struck again.
This time he took the handoff and again running to his left, raced down the sideline for a 48-yard touchdown. The Seahawks went to halftime leading 19-0.
The third quarter didn't seem any better for the visitors, but this time the big plays came from the Cape defense.
On the opening drive Duff was victimized by senior linebacker Ian Maccullum, who stepped in front of the throw and took the ball the other way for a 54-yard interception return for a TD.
Duff found himself under pressure again and on third-and-long he was stripped of the ball only to have junior Sam Hunter scoop it up and take it in from eight yards out for the second consecutive Seahawks defensive touchdown.
Smart rounded out the scoring with a 15-yard run capping a three-play, 36-yard drive. The Red Knights avoided the shutout when Bontrager was sacked for a six-yard loss in the end zone for a safety.
Despite the score, Seahawks coach Larry Gary pointed out "we still had some things to clear up and that we need to stay on point."
Cape Coral travels to Ida Baker next Friday while North hosts Mariner.
North FM 0 0 0 2 - 2
Cape Coral 6 13 21 0 - 40
CC - Fischl 17 pass from Bontrager (kick failed)
CC - Bailey 31 pass from Bontrager (kick failed)
CC - Bailey 48 run (Fragosa kick)
CC - Maccullum 54 interception return (Fragosa kick)
CC - Hunter 8 fumble return (Fragosa kick)
CC - Smart 15 run (Fragosa kick)
NFM - Safety, Bontrager sacked in end zone.