- Jake Elman Special to The Post
As Atlantic running back Shelley Singletary sprinted Friday through an open lane for what eventually became a 75-yard touchdown sprint, one thing kept him running.
“I see my grandma,” said Singletary, who ran for a touchdown later in the drive. “She died and if I see my grandma in the end zone, I have to get there. That’s who I’m doing it for.”
Not even a first-quarter lightning delay could stop Singletary, who added another touchdown through the air as the Atlantic Eagles scored 21 unanswered points to defeat the Plantation Colonels 29-14 in the Class 8A regional quarterfinals.
Plantation scored first in the opening quarter, taking advantage of a turnover on downs by Eagles quarterback Antoine Williams II and three Atlantic penalties in the span of two plays Colonels junior running back Kyle Walters put the Colonels on the board, scoring from 5 yards out with 5:30 left in the first quarter.
Atlantic took an 8-7 lead on the ensuing kickoff as Oyeh Lurry-Davis took a lateral into the end zone, setting up a successful quarterback run by Williams for the conversion.
Play was delayed by lightning with 3:53 left in the first quarter. Tyrik Ballamy provided the Eagles with the lead again, rushing for a 4-yard touchdown immediately after Plantation converted a fourth-and-four.
“You gotta get used to it,” Singletary said of the rain. “If you’re trying to go big, you gotta get used to (bad weather). You play in snow, you play in rain. That’s what we’re here for — we’re trying to make it.”
Senior wide receiver/tight end Cadarius Gaskin gave the Eagles a 15-14 lead before halftime when he caught a bobbled ball for a touchdown.
Plantation had a chance to score in the first half’s final seconds, but lost yardage on a sideline warning as the clock ran out.
“We never let down,” Singletary said. “We’re a family.”
Atlantic added to its lead with Singletary’s first touchdown, a 5-yard catch which came immediately after the junior broke off the 75-yard run. Singletary added a rushing score later in the third quarter.
Plantation had several opportunities to get back into the game, but interceptions and a muffed punt return with a little more than three minutes left dashed its hopes.
Atlantic will host Park Vista next week after the Cobras stunned top-anked Miramar on Friday night. Atlantic won 10-3 in a matchu between the teams on Sept. 22.