With a couple of fumbles and a failed onside kick, North sparked South’s game on a sweltering Husky Stadium for the June 30 Minnesota High School All-Star Football Game.
Seven Northwest Suburban Conference football players were included on the North All-Stars team roster, a team coached by Spring Lake Park High School’s Jeff Schlieff.
In the end, South chalked up a 33-21 victory in the 39th-annual high school all-star game.
Though disappointed with the final score, Schlieff appreciated the experience.
“It was a fun, rewarding week, working with the best athletes and coaches around the state,” said Schlieff, Spring Lake Park High School’s head football coach who took the reigns coaching the North team for last Saturday’s game.
“(It was a) tough game,” the coach said, recounting North’s fumble at the start of the game – a fumble that resulted in a South touchdown.
But that wasn’t the end of North’s troubles. Another fumble resulted in a second South touchdown, putting the score at 12-0.
These local athletes were included on the North All-Stars team roster:
• Defensive lineman DeQuan Mosley, Spring Lake Park
• Defensive back Noah Waiwaiolei, Spring Lake Park
• Defensive back Shaquille Theus, Coon Rapids
• Running back Josh Werness, Anoka
• Defensive lineman GJullian Flemister-King, Champlin Park
• Offensive lineman Kevin Olson, Andover
• Offensive lineman Kyle Griffin, Anoka
(Defensive back Anthony Hill, Champlin Park, was cut from the roster and Waiwaiolei was added late last week.)
North wasn’t going down easy, though, as they turned an 11-play, 75-yard drive into a 15-12 lead to open the second half.
“Our kids fought back tough to take a 15-12 lead, but momentum shifted back to (South) when we tried an onside kick and they got it, then scored,” Schlieff said.
Down 33-15 in the fourth quarter North came back and scored, then had a long drive going but turned it over on downs near the 30-yard line.
“I thought if we could get it in, we would recover the next onside kick and really make it interesting in the last few seconds,” Schlieff said.
Instead, North turned the ball over on downs, and the game ended, 33-21.
Sue Austreng is at firstname.lastname@example.org