The Academy of Holy Angels’ offense got off to a slow start Friday night in their season opener against South St. Paul. Their defense and special teams kept the team in the game until the offense found a rhythm. When…
The Academy of Holy Angels’ offense got off to a slow start Friday night in their season opener against South St. Paul. Their defense and special teams kept the team in the game until the offense found a rhythm. When they did, the Stars rolled to a week one home victory. Here are some of the player who stood out – for both the Stars and the Packers.
Academy of Holy Angels
Offensive/defensive lineman Rollin Rowe
The junior lineman was all over the field – especially on the defensive side of the ball. The Packers have a physical interior offensive line. Rowe was able to use his quickness and leverage to negate the size disadvantage he had to deal with. His disruption led to tackles by the junior both behind the line of scrimmage and for short gains. He also picked up a sack to force a punt.
On the offensive side of the ball, Rowe’s consistent play at guard kept the pass rush away from quarterback Theo Doran and opened the inside running game for running back Alex Knoll.
Wide receiver/defensive back Tristin Wiggins
Until he got hurt late in the first half, Wiggins was the most dynamic player on the field. He caught a short pass and sped up the sidelines for a first down. Then he reached back and grabbed a ball that was behind him for another first down. On an end-around, he kept the Stars’ first scoring drive alive by picking up a first down.
At corner, the Packers’ quarterback had a lot of room to the outside and a sure first down, but Wiggins came up in run support and made an open-field tackle – saving a first down. He turned a mistake into a big play as a punt returner. He muffed the punt but was able to gather the ball and with the Packers’ punt coverage team out of their lanes to pounce on the fumble, Wiggins was able to find a seam and get upfield for a forty-yard punt return.
Defensive lineman/tight end Taquez Chatman
The Packers were moving the ball early in the first quarter and tried to run an option play. Chatman beat his man at the point of attack and hit the quarterback before he was able to pitch the ball. His hit forced a fumble – giving the ball back to the offense. Later in the first half, he did it again although this time he would have to settle for a tackle for loss without a forced fumble. For a third time, he came up with a tackle for loss. On the team’s first scoring drive, Chatman caught a ball in the flat, turned up the field and wasn’t brought down until he got to the two-yard line.
South St. Paul
Offensive lineman Darien Foster
Although the Packers’ running game didn’t get going until late in the game, Foster showed why he is being looked at by college programs. When he got his hands-on defenders, they went backwards or went to the ground. On the successful inside runs, Foster – a guard – got his man turned and drove his man out of the hole. A saw at least one pancake block executed by the big senior. Foster also played some defensive tackle but was most successful on the offensive side of the ball.