By Jonah Woullard
The time had finally come. After weeks of fans, players, and coaches, making their predictions who would win the opening heavy weight bout, it was time to play football.
Generation Nexxt chose this game, as The Game of The Week, which will be aired on television Sunday morning 11:30 A.M. September 5, 2010, on CBS/My33. I was joined by co-host Brandon Odoi, and NFL pro-bowler, Sam Madison, as we would all be there to witness, The Showdown at the Cherry.
Both teams’ captains walked out to the middle field for the coin toss, Gwen Cherry won the toss and deferred to the second half. Richmond would try their hand at offense first, and would have to punt to the Bulls after a very physical three and out series. This would be the case for both teams, as both defenses were setting the tone for the game.
Later in the first quarter, the Bulls would make a costly turnover by fumbling on their own 41 yard line. The Giants capitalized on the Bulls’ mistake by putting together a methodical, nine play drive which would get the Giants down to the Bulls 4 yard line. Giants Head Coach Eddie Alford would then call the number of veteran running back,Tim Irving #2, to finish the drive off with a powerful 4 yard touchdown run. This score with the extra point conversion put the Giants up 8-0.
The Bulls would have their own opportunity to score in the second quarter with a strong 43 yard run by Bulls’ running back Joseph “JoJo” Robinson #3. Jojo’s run would set the Bulls’ offense up in the red zone. Then Bulls quarter back, Trayvon Grey #7, attempted a deep corner route to Bulls’ wide receiver, Zayquan Tyson #1, which was intercepted by Giants corner back, Da’Shawn Dawkins #10, in the end zone.Da’shawn returned the pick all the way back to the Bulls’ 46 yard line.
The Bulls’ defense would stiffen up and force a three and out, and would yet have another scoring opportunity. After two penalties, the Bulls would have first and ten at the Giants 15 yard line. The Giants’ defense would rise to the occasion and Tim Irving #2, who also plays safety for the Giants, would end up picking off a Bulls’ pass attempt, yet spoiling another Bulls’ scoring opportunity before the half.
The Bulls would start the second half down 0-8, with a mind set to run and pound the ball with their big running backs to get back in the game. With the Giants coaching staff committed to stopping the run, the Giants forced the Bulls to punt from their own 48 yard. This is when another costly mistake by Gwen Cherry Bulls would be capitalized by the Richmond Giants. The Giants blocked the Bulls’ punt and started their first possession of the second half with great field position.
The Giants would waste no time by calling an explosive play which included the Giant’s dynamic wide receiver, De’vonte Gulley # 7. De’vonte took a wide receiver toss sweep on a 41 yard scamper down to the Bulls’ 2 yard line. And one play later, talented Giant’s running back, Jaquan Johnson # 4, pounded it in for the final score 16-0.
This game came down to the Bulls making too many turnovers, three fumbles and two interceptions which both interceptions being in the Bulls’ own red zone. Gwen Cherry head coach Cory Smith said, “To beat a team like Richmond, you have to play mistake free football.”Coach Cory also said, “We learned a lot about ourselves as a coaching staff, and players today, and look forward to getting back on track this week against Overtown, and look forward to the potential rematch with the Giants come playoff time.”
In a post game interview, Richmond’s head coach Eddie Alford said, “Despite a sloppy game, his entire team stood up when their backs were against the wall, with a bend but don’t break mentality.” Coach Eddie also said, “He was extremely proud of his defense shutting out an extremely talented team with as many multiple offensive weapons as The Cherry has.”
Games like this are great for Pop Warner and great for youth football as well. You can look for these two teams to meet up again, but for now the Giants have bragging rights as being the Big Bullies on the block!
Make sure you catch this game on MY33, Sunday morning (Sept. 5th) 11:30 am, on the hottest youth sports network on the planet, Generation Nexxt. It’s your chance to be “Rated G!”