Cape Coral Christian returns to the field this fall to defend its championship of the Florida Christian Association of Private & Parochial Schools (FCAPPS) Southern Conference.
In their first year in six-man football last fall, the Crusaders went undefeated in conference play, then marched to the New School Championship, and qualified for the overall state playoffs. They got a tough draw in those playoffs, and lost in the quarterfinal round to eventual state champion Clearwater Academy 42-28.
It was a quick road to the top of the conference. The Crusaders played football just two seasons ago under the direction of coach Mike Curtis. They began the journey playing traditional 11-man, but with most of the team graduating in 2010 (11 seniors on that first squad), Curtis switched to the six-man format.
"We lost four really good kids this year," Curtis said.
Three graduated and one transferred. With a high school enrollment of about 40, Curtis was hopeful of attracting 20 to try out for the team.
Six-man football essentially is a smaller version of the 11-man game, played on an 80-yard field instead of 100. All six players are eligible as receivers. Three linemen are required to be on the line of scrimmage at the start of the play. The player receiving the snap cannot run the ball past the line of scrimmage, but if he tosses it to another player, that player can run or throw the ball. The player who took the original snap is then an eligible receiver.
The FCAPPS has 38 teams throughout Florida. The Southern Conference is made up of nine teams this year with the addition of Florida Christian Institute.
The Crusaders played mostly away games in their first season, but have five home games this season. The Southern Conference sends four teams to the playoffs this year, as opposed to one last year.
Key players for the Crusaders include seniors Miguel Morales at runningback and Jan Kondek at tackle and kicker, plus sophomores Christian Beckett and Alex Morales.
The Crusaders open the season on Sept. 3 at Tampa Golden Rule, with their next two games being home games against Donahue (Ave Maria) and Canterbury. The Crusaders will use North Fort Myers Community Park as their home field.
Cape Christian Crusaders
Sept. 3 - at Tampa Golden Rule, 7 p.m.
Sept. 10 - at Donahue Academy, 7 p.m.
Sept. 16 - vs. Canterbury, 7 p.m.
Sept. 23 - at Miami Westwood Christian, 7 p.m.
Sept. 30 - vs. Nicaea Adacemy, 7 p.m.
Oct. 14 - vs. Florida Christian Institute, 7 p.m.
Oct. 21 - at Miami Christian, 7 p.m.
Oct. 28 - vs. Oasis, 7 p.m.
Nov. 4 - vs. Island Christian, 7 p.m.
Head coach: Mike Curtis, third year (12-6)
Assistant coach: George Mazur (linemen), Derek Phillips (defense)
Home field: North Fort Myers Community Park, 2021 N. Tamiami Trail
Class/District: FCAPPS Southern Conference 6-Man
Playoff History: None
Home: 3-0 Away: 5-2
Lakeside Christian 54, CCC 24
CCC 66, Nicea Academy 6
CCC 40, Islamorada 14
CCC 34, Island Christian 20
CCC def. Miami Christian forfeit
CCC 64, Canterbury 37
CCC 64, Oasis 13
CCC 58, Westwood 0
CCC 63, Cornerstone Christian 42
Clearwater Christian 60, CCC 42