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West team makes big plays on offense, defense to win annual high school football all-star game

By Terry Boehmker
NKyTribune sports reporter

Coaching staffs for the annual St. Elizabeth HealthCare East-West Football All-Star Game had just two or three days of practice with their teams so they kept their game plans simple and relied on the athletic talent of the players.

In Thursday’s game, athletes on the West team made big plays on both offense and defense that carried them to a 14-0 win at Dixie Heights High School.

Running back Tayquan Calloway of Holmes looks for an opening on one of his carries during the East-West All-Star Football Game. (Photo by Bob Jackson)

“Earlier in the week, I thought it was going to be a very high-scoring game when we did 7-on-7 (scrimmage) against them, but our defense showed up to play,” said West coach Mike Engler of Ryle. “When you only have two and a half days of  preparation, they did very well.”

The game’s first touchdown came on a 52-yard breakaway run by Tayquan Calloway of Holmes with 1:10 left in the second quarter. He took a pitchout to the left and raced down the sideline untouched.

On the next play from scrimmage, West defensive back Brady Bond of Cooper intercepted a pass and returned it to the East 20-yard line to set up his team’s second touchdown.

That one came on a 5-yard pass from quarterback Drew Warth of Cooper to wide receiver Hunter Vaughn of Ryle in the end zone on a fourth-down play.

After that touchdown, Quantez Calloway of Holmes scored on a two-point conversion run with 0:09 left on the clock to give the West 14-0 halftime lead.

In the second half, the West defense forced a turnover on downs and came up with three more interceptions to preserve the shutout. The final pass picked off by linebacker Jackson Belk of Ryle stopped the East team’s best drive of the night inside the 20-yard line.

“Really, a lot of those interceptions were just hustle plays,” said Lloyd coach Kyle Niederman, who was in charge of the West defense during the limited practice sessions. “That just shows you when they’re all-stars that’s what they do. They’re out there for a reason — they hustle and have great attitudes.”

Dvion Davis

The West coaches named defensive back Dvion Davis of Boone County the game’s most valuable player. He didn’t have one of the team’s four interceptions, but coach Engler said “he impressed me a lot” with his pass coverage.

Davis, who will continue his career at Kentucky Wesleyan University, said he actually considered skipping the all-star game.

“I’m glad I got to (play),” Davis said. “This game helped me get my love for the game of football back. I was going to drop out, but I’m glad I didn’t. It was fun.”

At halftime, Davis was among the players from each of the 20 teams in the Northern Kentucky Football Coaches Association who received a $500 scholarship check.

Warth received the Chris Vier Courage Award from the coaches association. He returned for his senior season as Cooper’s quarterback after surgery and extensive physical therapy restored his ability to throw a football.

The halftime ceremony also recognized winners of the National Football Federation scholarships who were finalists for the Brian Williams “That’s My Boy” Award. Gabe Savage won this year’s award that’s based on athletic accomplishment, academic achievement and community service.

EAST ALL-STARS     0   0    0   0  — 0
WEST ALL-STARS   0   14   0   0  —  14

W – Tayquan Calloway 52 run (run failed)
W — Hunter Vaughn 5 pass from Drew Warth (Quantez Calloway run)

Beechwood —
Parker Mason. Bellevue — Logan Allen. Boone County — Dvion Davis. Brossart — Daniel Williamson. Campbell County — Josh Rittinger. Conner — Clayton Melcher. Cooper — Brady Bond. CovCath — Preston Agee. Dayton — Carson Trimnell. Dixie Heights — Davin Gomez-Smith. Highlands — Jake Welch. Holmes — Damian Green. Holy Cross — Cade Lehmkuhl. Lloyd — Jagur Eickhoff. Ludlow — Dustin Brewer. NewCath — Luke Brockman. Newport — Andrew Rath. Ryle — Jackson Belk. Scott — Luke Iden. Simon Kenton — Joe Vormbrock.

Dominic Morgan (Newport Central Catholic), Sam Epplen (Covington Catholic), Thomas Sayers (Brossart), Gabe Savage (Ryle).

Drew Warth (Cooper)


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