Gold wins McDonald’s All-Star Football Classic
Fans of all-star games expect a lot of offense. At last Thursday’s 48th Annual McDonald’s Lehigh Valley All-Star Football Game, there was a good bit of scoring, but most of it came from one side.
The Gold team, made up of players from Northampton County and Phillipsburg and Palisades High Schools, beat the Red Team (Lehigh, Carbon, Monroe counties) 35-7.
“It’s the last game of our high school career and it’s for a good cause,” said Emmaus offensive lineman Austen Kasaczun. “I would have liked to walk away with the win, but we’re out here and having a good time, putting on a show for people.”
Four Parkland players were on the Red team roster, including defensive lineman Jeremy Sell, kicker/punter Brian Hanton, linebacker Nathan Wieder and defensive back Juan Salas-Negron.
“I’m glad I was a part of this,” said Sell, who had several tackles as well as one catch for eight yards. “There were other games, but I would have rather stayed and played in this game. It was nice because I was really upset about losing our last game to St. Joe’s. This game gave me a little bounce back and got me excited to go play in college.”
The Gold team hit on a few big pass plays, starting with a 71-yard strike from Javon Clements (Bethlehem Catholic) to Edie Olsen (Easton) for a 7-0 lead midway through the first quarter.
Alston Wolfe (Saucon Valley) put the Gold ahead 14-0 with a one-year touchdown run with 3:39 left in the first quarter. Easton’s Scott Poulson (6-for-7, 169 yards, 2 TD) hit Christian Drayton (Bethlehem Catholic) with a 7-yard touchdown strike for a 21-0 lead early in the second quarter.
Wolfe became the third Gold quarterback to throw a touchdown pass when he hit Olsen with a 10-yard pass for a 27-0 lead with 7:14 left in the first half.
The Red team was on the doorstep twice in the first half, driving to the one-yard line and the 20-yard line on it’s final two possessions of the first half. Both drives ended with interceptions.
The Gold team tacked on another score when Poulson hit Eddie Hay (Bangor) with a 75-yard touchdown pass early in the fourth quarter.
The Red got on the board with 8:54 left in the game when Quidanie Vega (Dieruff) found Miguel Hernandez (Catasauqua) for a 66-yard touchdown pass.
The game allowed players from different schools to come together after spending years battling one another on the gridiron.
“In the end we all became friends,” said Sell. “We’re all going to hang out after this. We’re family now.”
The real winners in the game were Ronald McDonald House Charities, which the game benefits.
“It’s for the charity,” said Sell. “That’s all that matters. That’s the whole point.”