West Team beats East Team 21-20 in best game of Eight-Game Series!
January 22, 2012 Update
January 22, 2012 Update
Baton Rouge, Louisiana – The Eighth Annual Max Emfinger All-American Bowl Game Classic, was played on Saturday January 7 at A.W. Mumford Stadium on the University of Southern Campus. The West Team won 21-20 to take the lead after eight games with a 4-3-0 record. On paper, The West Team was supposed to dominate the East Team, because of an outstanding New Orleans defensive linemen lineup that included Darrian Dyson (6-3, 300, 4.9) of Karr; Marcel Andry (6-3, 290, 4.9) of St Augustine; and Leonard Washington (6-0, 300, 5.0) of Karr. Whether Laplace St Charles, Louisiana Super Star La’Jaylin Smith (6-0, 220, 4.56) played defensive end or linebacker, the West Team under Former Saints Pro-Bowler and Head Coach Tyrone Hughes, was going to be expected to dominate.
The East Team, with Head Coach Wes Chandler and Defensive Coordinator Bart Sessions of Mobile McGill Toolen, Alabama had other plans. The final score was in favor of the West by a slim 21-20 score, but the East Defensive Team only gave up seven points on defense.
There is always a strange Aura surrounding this All-American Bowl Game Classic, because for many of the players who are mysteriously flying under the recruiting radar to the college coaches; they are getting another chance to show how great they are. When you watch one of our games, you will instantly be amazed as to how intense and how physical our games have become.
You can watch other “Showcase Games” on television and you will not see the “hard-hitting” and physical contact in those games as you do in this game. For example: In the first quarter WR Deonte Dunklin of Panama City Bay, Florida was hit so hard after catching a pass, he had to leave the game with bruised ribs and we pray that he is OK. Then, in the fourth quarter, and with the score 21-20, two defensive backs for the West Team, simultaneously hit the East tight end so hard that he dropped the football. There were very few runs of any consequence, because the defensive players are always around the football.
If you have ever gone to one of our All-American Bowl Game Classic Games, I would suggest that next year, you watch one of the “Showcase Games” and then you will be able to make the comparison and see the difference. Our AABG players got a chance to watch two of those “so-called Showcases” and they were laughing as to how they were playing in “slow-motion” for the television cameras.
This All-American Bowl Game Classic might have been the best game ever in the eight-game series and the 2011 AABG Game was also pretty special, but this game is the only game that has been decided in the last minute of the game. The sad thing about this game was that the Offensive and Defensive Players of the Game on both the East and West Team, because of politics, did not have a single scholarship offer before the game started. In fact, it gets even worse when two of the four players who were MVP’s of the Game did not make All-District, because their High School Head Coach did not nominate them.
With 1:40 left in the game and the score tied at 14-14, La’Jaylin Smith (6-0, 220, 4.56) made one of the biggest plays of the game or any game when he grabbed the ball out of the East running back hands and raced 13-yards for what looked like the winning touchdown. After Super kicker Greg Pittman of New Orleans Cox kicked the extra point, the score was 21-14 in favor of the West Team and there was only 1:20 left in the game.
This is when East Quarterback Dean Mosley (6-4, 196, 4.8) from Orlando Agape Christian, Florida went to work as he hit his favorite receiver, Justin Davidson (6-5, 250, 4.7) of Ashland Russell, Kentucky, with a 48-yard pass down to the 27-yard line, but now, there were only 38 seconds left in the game. East Coach Chandler then called timeout with only 32 seconds left. After the timeout, Mosley hit tight end Elias Petties (6-3, 220, 4.6) from Fairhope, Alabama with a 21-yard pass down to the 5-yard line, but there were only 24.3 seconds left in the game.
After an incompletion, Mosley hit Davidson again on a five-yard quick slant for the potential game-tying touchdown with the extra point and now there were only 20.4 seconds left in the game.
This All-American Bowl Game Classic has always played by NCAA College rules for seven years and with a potential 21-21 tie score at the end of the regulation game, the College Overtime Rules would be in effect and so I alerted the referees of the situation.
With twenty seconds left in the game and the outcome on the line, the East Team scored a touchdown to make the score 21-20 with the extra point kick to either tie or two to win. Coach Wes Chandler wanted to win the game on this extra point try and since Davidson had been successful all night at the quick slant and deep post, everyone on the field and in the stands thought that Mosley would try to hit Davidson.
On this play, however, FS Jared Bryant (5-10, 180, 4.42) was guarding Davidson pretty closely and QB Mosley picked this up and threw the football to Petties. LB Zach Hetrick (6-3, 240, 4.6) of Central and SS Logan Metcalfe (6-1, 195, 4.5) of Central hit Petties so hard that they jarred the ball-lose on what looked like a sure-catch and thus giving the West the 21-20 win. Now, there were only 20.4 seconds left in the game.
After the game, the West coaches voted Bryant as the West Defensive MVP of the Game and Hetrick as the West Linebacker MVP of the Game. Since the 11 tackles by Bryant helped the West to win, Bryant was also voted as the Defensive MVP of the Game. Hetrick had nine tackles, including two for a loss and the game winning tackle with Metcalfe.
Bryant, Hetrick, and Metcalfe are the typical players that play in our All-American Bowl Game Classic, are found by some school, and in a few years become an All-American and people will be scratching their heads trying to figure out where they came from.
With 7:55 left in the second quarter, QB Collin Rowland (6-3, 190, 4.5) of Donaldsonville Ascension Catholic, Louisiana hit slot receiver Brent Terrance (5-7, 165, 4.29) of Baton Rouge Woodlawn on a beautiful 45-yard catch down to the 15-yard line. Then on third down, Rowland hit Larry Dace III (5-9, 165, 4.4) on a 10-yard pass, down to the five-yard line. After an incomplete pass, Javughn “Honey Badger II” Staley (5-9, 180, 4.4) of Deltona Trinity Christian, Florida intercepted a Rowland pass and went 100-yards, down the sideline, for the touchdown, giving the East Team a 14-7 lead with only 4:56 left in the first half.
There were so many huge plays in this All-American Bowl Game Classic, but one of the biggest for the West Team was in the second quarter when QB Kasen Key (6-5, 215, 4.7) from Owasso, Oklahoma hit his favorite wide receiver Kevin Green (6-1, 190, 4.42) of Scotlandville, Louisiana on an 80-yard touchdown pass that tied the score at 14-14 with 4:31 left in the first half. The West Team had two other great wide receivers in the game in Lorenzo Doss (6-0, 190, 4.4) of New Orleans St Augustine who made several great catches and his St Augustine teammate Larry Dace III who also made several great catches. Both Doss and Dace also made sensational catches in practice.
Chase Hadley (6-2, 185, 4.5) of Robertsdale, Alabama and Matthew Harris (5-9, 170, 4.45) of Spanish Fort, Alabama, along with Davidson and Petties all made great catches during practice during the week for the East Team. In fact, Harris went up and made a great catch on Thursday in practice, but he came down wrong on his knee and he did not play in the game, because his knee still was a little sore.
In the first half, Cornerback Jeffrey Hall (5-10, 180, 4.4) of Laplace St Charles, Louisiana; Bryant of Baton Rouge Tara; Linebacker Hetrick of Central, Louisiana; and Linebacker Jacob Davis (6-3, 240, 4.6) of Wichita Northeast, Kansas had big hits behind the line of scrimmage for the West Team. Cornerback Terrence Taylor (5-10, 180, 4.37) of White Castle, Louisiana and Free Safety Garrett Simpson (5-9, 190, 4.4) of Baton Rouge Episcopal, Louisiana also made key plays.
Also in the first half, Linebacker Scott Dacus (6-1, 225, 4.6) of Fairhope, Alabama; Linebacker Donald Mix (6-2, 210, 4.6) of Bay Minette Baldwin County, Alabama; Defensive End David Dalton (6-0, 240, 4.8) of Robertsdale, Alabama; Strong Safety Damarius Travis (6-2, 210, 4.5) of Pensacola, Florida; Defensive Tackle Tyrell Biggs (6-1, 298, 5.0) of Panama City Bay, Florida; and Linebacker James Franklin (6-1, 210, 4.6) of Deltona Trinity Christian Academy, Florida had big hits either at the line of scrimmage or behind it. Franklin also made a key tackle for a three-yard loss with 13:04 left in the third quarter. Chris Norman (6-0, 240, 4.7) of Bay Minette Baldwin Co, Alabama also made several great plays in the game.
Kasen Key was outstanding all night as he completed 7 of 10 passes for 137-yards, including his 80-yard score to Green. All three incomplete passes by Key were dropped and he rushed for 15-yards and a three-yard touchdown on a sneak as he was voted by the coaches as the West Offensive MVP as well as the Offensive Game MVP. Davidson was voted as the East Offensive MVP. Bryant was West Defensive MVP as well as the Game Defensive MVP and Staley was the East Defensive MVP. Bryant was a ferocious head-hunter all night as he finished with 5 solo tackles; six assisted tackles; and two pass deflections. Hetrick had nine tackles, including two for a loss and the game-winner on Petties. Staley had six tackles and the 100-yard interception return for a touchdown.
Other position West Team MVP’s went to Running Back Nate Meadors (5-7, 170, 4.4) of Plano East, Texas; Wide Receiver Kevin Green of Scotlandville, Louisiana; offensive Lineman Blaine Poydras (6-4, 320, 5.0) of Scotlandville, Louisiana; defensive lineman La’Jaylin Smith; LB’s Hetrick and Davis; and cornerback D.J. Gatlin (5-8, 165, 4.4) of Shreveport Evangel who recorded four solo tackles; three assisted tackles; and one pass deflection.
All three kickers in the All-American Bowl Game Classic were outstanding and unbelievable and they all three received Game MVP Awards, including Greg Pittman from New Orleans Helen Cox; Gerald Shouse of Shreveport Evangel, Louisiana; and punter Wyatt Hubbard of Foley, Alabama who boomed a 62-yard punt in the game; even after the ball was centered over his head and he had to retrieve it and punt it.
East Team MVP’s went to Running Back Trey Roberts (6-0, 185, 4.42) of Mobile McGill-Toolen, Alabama; WR Chase Hadley of Robertsdale, Alabama; Offensive Linemen Dak Sims (6-1, 325, 5.2) of Pensacola, Florida; Jake Wallace (6-2, 275, 5.0) of Shreveport Evangel, Louisiana; Brandon Farmer (6-4, 310, 5.2) of Gulfport Harrison Central, Mississippi; and OC Kyron Samuels (6-2, 285, 5.0) of Fairhope, Alabama.
Defensive Lineman Tyrell Biggs of Panama City Bay, Florida was outstanding all night as he recorded eight tackles and a sack; while defensive end David Dalton of Robertsdale, Alabama recorded six tackles and two sacks; Linebacker James Franklin; safety Damarius Travis and cornerback Charles Carter (5-10, 190, 4.5) of Fairhope, Alabama who recorded seven tackles and had two pass deflections. Sims, Biggs, Franklin, Travis, and Carter were dominating and outstanding.
One day. I was doing some behind the scenes business and I did not make it to practice until after it had started. As I got to the practice field, I noticed a safety wearing #7 and I emmediately thought that he might be the best looking ohysical specimen on the practice field. It was Damarius Travis who had given the Minnesota Gophers a verbal before the game.