The EM Downer Bearcats used a deep bench and relentless pass defense to defeat the incredible Richmond All Stars and capture the 2014 City of Richmond 12U Flag Football League championship.
The No. 1 All-Stars were at a disadvantage against the Bearcats, having no substitutes, but nevertheless fought valiantly from the first whistle to the last. In fact, the score at the half was knotted at 13 apiece after the Bearcats were called for a 7-second violation before completing a point after attempt at the end of the first half.
After the lights replaced the sun, Bearcats exhibited a concerto of agility and the All Stars began to tire. The Bearcats kept fresh legs on the field and they flew on the artificial turf, if not danced upon it. They robbed their opponent’s passes and on offense used nifty footwork to slip past defenders and add two more trips to the endzone.
Gassed, but not quite out, Richmond All Stars continued to show signs of life. Underneath tosses to their sturdy center amounted for considerable yardage, as he would lose his pursuer and slip into the secondary. However, the All Stars would not cross the goal line anymore this season, and the Bearcats took the title.
Before the title game, the EM Downer Bearcats unseated the No. 2 seed College Prep Cougars 33-12.
The Bearcats looked good even before the game’s start, displaying their customary uniformity and cadence during warm-ups. They were looking for revenge against the Cougars, who earlier in the season had defeated them in an overtime close-call which came down to a difference of less than 10 yards.
The Bearcats reached the endzone three times in the first half and led 20-6 at the break. College Prep seemed to have few answers for the quickness and agility of Bearcats’ offense. Nifty footwork kept the scoreboard dynamic. College Prep had for weeks relied on the long ball and a big strong receiver core to out muscle defenders. However, on this afternoon, EM Downer was having none of that. Not only was College Prep unable to claw back into the game via the deep toss, Bearcat defensive backs were knocking down and outright nabbing Cougar pass attempts; some in highlight reel fashion.
Despite the route, the Cougars made it this far through solid performances and exceptional plays, and they ended their season with outstanding sportsmanship.
Consolation Bracket Championship
Squads unable to advance to the league championship series competed in the Consolation Bracket Championship.
The first game pitted the original No. 5 and No. 6 seeds, San Pablo/Salesian Boys & Girls Club and Richmond PAL, respectively. The SP/S B&GC brought their “A” game and caught PAL off guard. The solid PAL offense was only able to produce 6 total points. However, their equally solid defense was able to stymie the B&GC offense to the tune of a shut-out.
Lying in wait for the Consolation Semifinal winner was the College Prep Pumas. The Original No. 4 seed had arrived about mid-way through the semi-final game. After their win PAL took a break to rehydrate and rest up a bit. However, the team never turned off their engines. PAL hit the ground running on all cylinders. PAL’s defense was again up for the challenge; forcing the Pumas to turn the ball over on downs repeatedly. Late in the second half, PAL appeared to have their 12-6 lead erased when a Puma ball carrier got loose for a score. However, a penalty nullified the effort and PAL went on to win the Consolation Bracket Championship 12-6.
The above information was provided by Vencel Alfred, a Recreation Leader for the city.