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Written by: David Burnworth on Saturday, June 5th, 2021
Last night I made the drive to Independence high school in Independence, Ohio to catch for the first time the Cuyahoga County East-West All-Star game, and I wanted to say this was a gem filled with a lot of talented ballplayers, most of who have signed to play college ball. The crowd for an all-star game was big and so nice to see since last was, well over and done.
Mathieu VanSteenlandt of the West would connect with Nick Buttari for a big 21-yard gain with 10:37 left in the opening quarter. Buttari, who will be attending Mt Union made a leaping catch to electrify the big crowd. The drive ended just a short time later/ The first quarter would fly by with defense ruling the nest, with 4:31 showing on the clock Johnny Black would sack East quarterback Nate Bledos for a 7-yard loss. Black will be attending Hiram University. With the scoreless first quarter nearing an end Alex Benson a Tiffin University recruit made a nice 39-yard catch to give the East crowd something to cheer about. The West defense would get the last laugh of the quarter when Adam Miklovic got to Nate Bledsoe for a short loss.
The East offense would get a Pat McQuaide to Velonte Paul completion for 54-yards just ten seconds into the 2nd quarter. McQuaide will be attending Kent State. Later on the drive, McQuaide would find Alex Benson for a 14-yard touchdown on fourth and goal from the fourteen. Ryan Miller made this a 7-0 game with his P.A.T. The West defense would make two nice plays before the first half came to a close. First, Adam Miklovic would get to Michael Pace for a short loss, then it would be Thomas Aden getting to McQuade for another loss. Aden was I.M.O. the best defensive linemen on the field in this one.
The third quarter continued with the defensive theme we were treated to in the first half with Noah Foster from the East getting to University of Akron recruit Timothy Whiting for a 3-yard loss. The West defense responded with Garrett Sparks making a sweet leaping interception. One play later the East defense would get a pick by Deangelo Bell, from Warrensville Heights. The East offense ran a beautiful flea-Flicker with McQuaide connecting with Benson for a big 54-yard gain. Though no points were scored in the quarter it was an exciting defensive display by both teams. The half would not end before Miklovic sacked McQuaide and then from the East side a blocked punt by Javon Edwards. It appeared that Edwards got a big paw on the kick from my top row 50-yard line seat on the visitor’s side.
The ensuing drive after the blocked punt continued into the final quarter and ended on a McQuaide to Malik Simmons 4-yard touchdown pass making this a 14-0, after the P.A.T. from Miller, with 11:50 left in the contest. The West offense would get a 26-yard catch from Daniel Patterson to get things going with a little over 9:00 left on the clock. What appeared to be a pick and nice return from McQuaide was negated because of a defensive hold called on the play. The West would take advantage of the break with their first score of the game with VanSteenlandt finding Michael Reddick for the 13-yard score to make this a 14-6 game. Just fifteen seconds later the West defense got a nice pick from Garrett Sparks. The luck did not last long for the West because fifteen seconds later Chazz Hunter made a pick for the East. The West defense would respond with a 10-yard sack on McQuaide by Aden. The last score of the game came on a 4-yard touchdown run by Bledsoe to give us our final score of 21-6 after Miller made good on the P.A.T. The East defense ended this game with another interception with Marcus Woods.
East 54 PLAYS
PASSING 11-26 1 TD 1 INT
PASSING 4-15 1 TD 2 INT’S
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