Just the beginning

Erna Delice, Editor-in-Chief


Throughout the summer the Hurricanes’ new football Coach Rashad Jackson and his team prepared for their first official game of the season Aug. 25 at Santaluces.

In their tune-up scrimmage game the week before, hosting the Central Stallions of Haines City, Fla., their hard work paid off with a 59-0 victory.Β 

That was followed by last week’s contest against the Santaluces Chiefs, that left Canes fans disappointed at what seemed obvious officiating errors that could have impacted the 32-20 loss.

Following the game there was a lot on social media, as indicated by Palm Beach Post reporter Emilee Smarr, who wrote thatΒ  β€œdebates have suggested controversial key plays for Santaluces in a win over Inlet Grove.”

For example, a third-quarter touchdown pass to Timothy Mann Jr that was called incomplete, as the Canes were making a comeback from 26-13, β€œshould have counted as it happened right in front of me,” said English teacher Ms. Riley. β€œThe ref who said, β€˜no catch’ was nowhere near the play.”

β€œI would have enjoyed it better if the ref had made the play,” Ms. Riley added. β€œI felt like I was watching β€˜Remember the Titans’ where the refs were just being unfair to Denzel Washington’s team.”

Considering there were two such questionable calls, and the Canes suffered a 12-point deficit, 1- or 2-point conversion could have delivered a Canes victory.

β€œThe score,” Ms. Riley said, β€œwas not reflective of Inlet Grove’s fight. Even though the referees were against us, the young men never gave up.”

Coach Jackson, from Belle Glade, also known as Muck City, attended Glades Central High School, and then Marshall University, where he played Division 1 football while earning his bachelor’s degree in Business Administration and master’s in Health Administration.

Coach Jackson returned to the Glades as head coach for his alma mater’s Raiders. As the Palm Beach Post reported, he guided the team for two seasons, including a second-round playoff appearance last fall, and a 5-2 record including a semifinal appearance in the Tri-County championship his first year.Β 

Coach Jackson also became The Post’s Small Schools Co-Coach of the Year for 2020 and had 24 scholarship recruits.

Interviewed for GroveWatch when he first arrived at Inlet Grove, Coach Jackson said he welcomed the opportunity β€œto build a championship program that’s highly respected in our school and community, on and off the field.” 

His favorite part about coaching, he said, is helping student athletes further their careers while having the best experience possible.Β 

β€œWin the kids and the game is already won!”