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Ocala Vanguard A Real Test For Leesburg's Pass Defense, Page 1
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Ocala Vanguard A Real Test For Leesburg's Pass Defense, Page 1
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Ocala Vanguard A Real Test For Leesburg's Pass Defense, Page 1
Ocala Vanguard A Real Test For Leesburg's Pass Defense, Page 1
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Leesburg Yellow Jackets vs. Ocala Vanguard Knights, High School Football
Game

SPORTS - GAME OF THE WEEK

Ocala Vanguard A Real Test For Leesburg's Pass Defense

October 9, 1992|By Joe Williams Of The Sentinel Staff
Orlando Sentinel
Updated: Thursday, September 29, 2016, 5:06 p.m.

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LEESBURG — Ed Hoffman hopes this will be a weekend to celebrate. First, the Leesburg coach would
like to celebrate a homecoming victory tonight against Ocala Vanguard.

Then, on Saturday, he will celebrate his first wedding anniversary.

But, to make this a weekend of true celebration, Hoffman knows the Yellow Jackets will have to do
something they didn't do well last year - stop the pass.

As good as Leesburg's defense was last year - limiting teams to a Lake County-low of 11.1 points a
game - it was a common perception that teams could pass against the Yellow Jackets. Leesburg
surrendered a county-high 898 yards through the air.

''I don't think it is a bum rap,'' said Hoffman, who, as defensive coordinator last year, is in a position to
know. ''We did have problems stopping the pass last year. But part of our philosophy was to 'bend, but
don't break.'

''We gave up a lot of passes underneath.''

The Vanguard (2-2) at Leesburg (3-1) game at 7:30 p.m. at Memorial Field/Hubert O. Dabney Stadium
is one of seven games scheduled for tonight involving Lake and Sumter teams.

In others: Groveland is at Cocoa Beach in a Class AA, District 5 game; Clermont is at Citrus; Eustis is
at Wildwood; Mount Dora is at Rockledge; Umatilla is at Lecanto; and in a battle of unbeatens, South
Sumter (3-0) is at second-ranked (Class AAA) Dade City Pasco (3-0).

Although Leesburg's defense, now directed by George Fuller, is leading the county with two shutouts
and giving up an average of only 4.75 points a game, the pass defense hasn't been tested yet.

Vanguard exploited Leesburg's weakness last year in losing a 30-28 decision. Vanguard quarterback
Stephen Bowen completed 22 of 38 passes for 294 yards and four touchdowns. He almost led a
second-half comeback after Leesburg led, 30-14, at halftime.

Bowen and Vanguard's top receiver, Amel Brooks, have graduated, but Hoffman, now Leesburg's head
coach, still sees the Knights' passing potential. Quarterback Daunte Culpepper, though a sophomore,
is 6 feet 3 inches and has a good arm. Several of Vanguard's other receivers are back.

''What worries me about this week is that we are facing a team that throws the ball,'' Hoffman said.
''They can throw 50 percent of the time, if not more. Our two corners, Herbert Ellis and D.J. Keith, are
excellent corners. The guy in the middle (safety Julliard Roberts) is going to have to play well.''

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This article was provided by Gerald Lacey
Gerald Lacey is the senior sports writer covering Leesburg High School Sports for the Carver Heights
Quarterback Club. You can reach him at:
geraldlacey@leesburgyellowjacketsfootball.com
LEESBURG YELLOW JACKETS VS. OCALA VANGUARD KNIGHTS, FOOTBALL ARCHIVES
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