There will be plenty of time for dramatic moments in Florida Tech football history, but it’s going to be hard to top the first one.
Quarterback Sean Ashley dove into the end zone from three yards out with 1:09 remaining to give the Panthers a 20-13 victory over Stetson University in Florida Tech’s inaugural game at Palm Bay High School’s Pirate Stadium.
This one had it all. Florida Tech’s defense played well and got a key fumble recovery late in the game. Fullback Trevor Sand ran for 54 yards in the fourth quarter despite having to leave the field momentarily when he got sick on the sidelines. Xavier Milton had 10 catches for 173 yards, and became the answer to a future trivia question when he became the first player to score a touchdown in Florida Tech history. Running back Jarvis Giles also had a big night with 14 carries for 104 yards, including a big 32-yard run on the game-winning touchdown drive.
So many good things for the Panthers to remember on a night when they weren’t as sharp as they would have hoped. “I guess we gave everyone their money’s worth,” Panthers head coach Steve Englehart said. “… I can’t be happier with the win, but I’m sure there’s going to be a lot of things that I look at tomorrow on film that I won’t be very happy with.”
But there is no denying, the first football victory in Florida Tech history was cause for celebration.