By Julia Chongarlides
If you walked into the Miami Carol City Park on Saturday afternoon you would have thought an NFL game was going on. The Miami Garden Ravens, head coached by Melvin Robinson and the Northside Panthers, head coached by Sean Horne were playing for bragging rights and the number one seed for the 100lb south division.
The Panthers walked onto the field wearing pink socks and sweat bands in honor of breast cancer awareness month. The crowd showed their enthusiasm through yells, chants and horns. Both teams entered this game with an 8-0 record.
To sum up the first half, the Ravens’ QB Marlon Smith started with a pass off to Irshad Davis for a 5 yard gain down the middle for, a 1st down for the Ravens. Dennis Butler Jr. added a few gained yards to make it a second down. Then, Marlon Smith threw for 5 yards to Derrick Jackson on the right side; the Ravens were 1st and goal. The crowd was hyped, waiting anxiously for the first touchdown of the game, which came from Irshad Davis. The score remained 6-0 Ravens for the remained of the first half.
The Ravens had possession of the ball to begin the second half, but a quick incomplete pass by Marlon Smith turned the ball over. The Panther’s Quarterback Jawan Cray took advantage of Samuel Brooks’ speed by feeding him the ball in the first 4 plays of their second half possession. Brooks attempted to make plays to the right, down the middle, and to the left but in the end, was stopped by the Ravens’ Jakai LinWood and a host of Ravens. Unfortunately for the Ravens, they didn’t have enough defensive power to stop Panthers’ Rayquan Berry, who scored the Panther’s only touchdown of the game. After a successful one-point conversion, the Panther’s took the lead, 7-6.
The Ravens, down by 1, did not back down. Ravens’ Quarterback, Marlon Smith had other plans for his team. Ravens’ Jonathan Silva jumped on board with Smith’s idea by adding a nice 15 yard gain for a Raven’s 1st down. Next play, Smith took business into his own hands, running down the middle on 2nd down. The 3rd and 4th downs were incomplete passes from Smith. It wasn’t looking good; the crowd was getting rowdy by the second. But a litter later in the fourth quarter a big play by Marlon Smith changed the course of the game. With a minute left in the game, Smith threw a 20 yard pass to Ravens’ Treyunn Lane up the left side for the Ravens’ first down.
With less than one minute left in the game, Ravens’ Quarterback Marlon Smith received the snap and looked for an open player; they were all covered, so he tucked the ball and sprinted up the middle of the defense. This play set up the Ravens for a winning touchdown pass to Ravens’ wide receiver, Chandler Jones for with 31 seconds left in the game. “I knew we were going to win, that’s why I passed it to him,” explained Marlon Smith after the game.
After the game, Ravens’ Head Coach Melvin Robinson said, “Tough game, we stuck true to our guns knowing that we could pass on this team.” This was a big win for Ravens. Their focus now, is a championship title. Ravens’ wide receiver, Chandler Jones tells Generation Nexxt his philosophy, “We still can’t lay down just because we are number 1.”