HOLYOKE — It was the finals of the Excel Sports Academy 7-on-7 Monday at Gilligan Field, and Springfield Central came away with a 26-20 overtime win over Amherst in an exciting finish.
With the score tied at 20, each team had one down from the 10-yard line to try and score. Central came up with a stop on the first play, then William "Pop" Watson III hit Cam Lee for the game-winning touchdown moments later to end it.
Pop Watson hits Cam Lee for the game-winning touchdown.
A few other players stood out on defense for the Golden Eagles. CJ Davis, a junior safety, had a strong day, as did linebacker Tyson Thornton, who continues to show that he can cover as well as he can rush the passer and defend the run.
Central also had strong linebacker play from sophomore Brendan Guy and senior Cori Jackson, and senior Mahari Miller always shows that he can do a little bit of everything for his team. Trey Cavaan also had a key interception in the win over Amherst.
Although he was not there tonight, also keep an eye on incoming freshman Mesias Lee at linebacker, adding depth to another position of strength for the Golden Eagles.
Although there are obviously no offensive linemen showing off their talents at a 7-on-7, we are told that the Golden Eagles have some stability there, too. Returning starters Travis Gause and Greg Harris provide leadership, while Chicopee transfer Jacob Delgado and incoming freshman Jayden Bass could also see time.
Also, sophomore Zayd Sadiq's interception of Watson kept his team alive for a comeback that forced overtime when Mills hit Woodfine-Holmes with a late score.
Another quarterback that had a terrific night was Minnechaug's Anthony Izzo. He possesses nice touch on his deep ball, and was able to place it in some tight spots Monday night.
The Falcons should be one of the main challengers to Springfield Central out West in Division 3, if not the second-best team in that region, although Amherst put in a good claim to the latter.