Courtesy of ahsaa.com
2016 Gadsden City High graduate Denzel Mooney participated in the weather-shortened AHSAA North-South All-Star football game on Thursday (July 21) at Montgomery’s Cramton Bowl.
Lightning and heavy rains forced the game to be called at 8:16 of the second quarter with the North holding a 14-0 lead.
Quarterback Zach Cupps of Gardendale was 5-of-6 passing for 96 yards and a 51-yard touchdown pass to Sheffield wide receiver Aaron Pride to earn MVP honors for head coach Frank Tucker’s North squad. The score came at 5:19 of the first quarter and just three and a half minutes after Minor’s David Mitchell’s 14-yard touchdown run. It was Mitchell’s only run of the night. Morgan Coston of Leeds kicked both extra points.
Mitchell’s score capped a six-play, 40-yard march the North’s first possession of the game.
The South drove to the North 29-yard line on its second possession of the game but McGill-Toolen quarterback Parish Chambers was sacked for a 6-yard loss back to the 35 by Leeds defensive lineman Josephus Smith. The South turned the ball over on downs at the 31.
It took just four plays for the North to score again. Cupps connected with Mooney for 19 yards to midfield, and two plays later, Cupps found Pride open down the right sideline for the 51-yard score.
The North defense limited the South to four plays on their next possession. Cupps moved the North offense from its own 15 to the South 46 before the drive stalled. Each team would get one more drive each before the lightning forced the teams to the locker room just before 8 p.m. The game was finally called an hour later as lightning continued and heavy rains began to fall.
With Sparkman quarterback Mason Edwards directing the offense, the North moved from its own 14-yard line to the South 34 – with 50 yards coming on a pass from Edwards o West Point’s Kobe Smith – when the teams were forced to leave the field.
Cupps also rushed for 10 yards on one carry and finished with 106 total yards. Edwards was 3-of-5 passing for 67 yards.
Leeds’ Smith had four tackles, including two for losses, to lead the North defense. Justin Little of Tuscaloosa County added two tackles and Blake Stidham of Hamilton was in on three stops.
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