The first Palm Beach County spring high school football game was held on Wednesday night at War Eagle Stadium in Delray Beach as the Miami Northwestern Bulls topped the Atlantic Eagles 19-7. A statue of Pro Football Hall of Fame member Y.A. Tittle was dedicated prior to the contest.
Both schools won district titles and made the FHSAA playoffs last season. The Bulls lost to the Carol City Chiefs in the Class 6A regional semifinal while the Eagles fell to the Deerfield Beach Bucks in the Class 8A regional final.
The first quarter belonged to the Atlantic Eagles. Running back Aaron Lewis fumbled the ball on a hit by linebacker Jason Mercier at the Bulls 47-yard line five minutes in. Eagles wide receiver Corey Gammage had a leaping one-handed catch for a 15-yard touchdown negated due to a player illegally downfield at the midway point of the quarter. Wide receiver Cadarius Gaskin caught a 13-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Kalani Ilimaleota in the back of the end zone with 4:01 left in the first.
Miami Northwestern changed the momentum of the game late in the second quarter. Quarterback Chatarius Atwell Jr. connected a 24-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Justin Hill to make it 7-6 with 20.6 seconds left in the first half.
The Bulls commanded the second half as they added two touchdowns during the third quarter. They took their first lead at the 6:31 mark when Atwell threw a 37-yard pass into the right corner of the end zone to wide receiver Derrick Davis and were ahead 12-6.
The Miami Northwestern defense got a turnover when linebacker Cortland Faison intercepted the ball at the Eagles 28-yard line and returned it 18 yards. Three plays later, running back Corey Hammett blasted up the middle for a two-yard touchdown run with 2:12 to go.