Siskiyou County High School football standouts played their hearts out Saturday at the 42nd Lions All Star Game, held at Chico High School’s newly renovated Panther Stadium.
In the 11-man game, the north lost by a point, 13-12. Mount Shasta’s Gage Kinkade and Etna’s Wyatt Black started as outside linebackers for West Valley coach Greg Grandell. Yreka’s Martinez also got some field time as linebacker.
The south team took an early lead in the first quarter, scoring twice for 13 points, missing one of their extra point opportunities. The north came back to score two touchdowns and both times tried for two point conversions. Ultimately those were unsuccessful, leaving them a point behind. Kinkade reached up for an interception in the third quarter, and although the north threatened to score again in the fourth quarter, the team fell short. The south kneeled the ball to run out the clock with a little over a minute left to secure the win.
In the 8-man game, the north was triumphant 32-26, with a large cast of Siskiyou County players, including Lennoux Guzman, Brendan Neville, and Enrique Sanchez of Weed High School; Evan Freeman and Kyle Jones of Dunsmuir High School; Jordan McCartney of Happy Camp High School; Teagan Walker of Tulelake High School; and Austin Martinez of Butte Valley High School.
McCloud High School standout Joseph Summers took the field for the south 8-man team and was almost unstoppable as a running back. He scored twice in the second quarter when he ran for a 51 yard touchdown and a 65 yard touchdown. Summers also scored on a 88-yard kickoff return to start the third quarter. Korbin Woolery of McCloud also played for the south 8-man team.
The game was tied 26-26 when Walker of Tulelake recovered a fumble around midfield with 48 seconds left in the fourth quarter to give the north the ball. A key play for the north on the drive included Weed Cougar Neville catching a 27-yard pass. The north scored on a 15-yard run by Redding Christian signal caller Isaiah Van Denend. Weed’s Guzman had a 67 yard run in the first quarter.
The teams were comprised of all star football players from Yreka south to Yuba City and is sponsored by the Lions Club with proceeds benefiting Camp McCumber, a summer camp for children with diabetes. The players participated in a week-long camp June 17-21, held at Shasta High School, to prepare for the game. The players bonded and became fast friends – a reason that they performed so well on the field, said Grandell.