Pirates await challenge of new district
MANATEE -- Five straight trips to the playoffs, adding up to more than 50 wins in a five year span.
Curt Bradley took over Braden River’s football program in 2012, and has the team ready for another chapter.
“That is something we take great pride in,” Bradley said.
The feels around Pirates camp is positive.
“We got a great group of men who have really bought in, and had a great summer and a great start to our season,” Bradley said
While the calendar changes, Braden River is always steady in it's course.
“Expecting to be there at the end of the year, competing for a district championship,” Bradley said.
One of the few seniors, on a Pirates team that graduated 22 helmets last year, Quinn McNulty, will take that a step further.
“Just staying conditioned and mentally focused on the goal, which is state championship of course. Just working and working,” McNulty said.
At quarterback is, Junior Shawqi Itraish, who enters his third year and the program is tasked at filling the void of the departed Bryan Gagg, who heads to East Carolina to play on Saturdays.
“It’s a humbling experience to be honest, but some big shoes to fill as well,” Itraish said. “I think he is going to show some great leadership ability, and do some great things on the field this year,” Bradley said.
New look district for BR, as the Pirates join Class 6A.
“Definitely going to be a tougher schedule, no real fluff games, but we have to take the challenge head on and go right at it,” McNulty said.
Bring on match-ups with the likes of: Manatee, Riverview and Palmetto.
“We have a group of young guys who are ready to go to war,” Itraish said.