Williams: Youthful teams go all out to win

Championship football came to town recently.

It was the Laguna Saints versus cross-town rivals, the Laguna Jets. The teams had split the previous two meetings, the Jets coming off the previous week with the big win.

This was the tie-breaker game, with bragging rights going to the victor.

These 8-year-old kids (including my son George) were thrilled to be playing at the big Laguna Beach High School field. It was decked out with banners, pre-game player introductions, play-by-play commentary and a silky voiced deejay to spin music at halftime.

The sidelines were jam-packed with cheering parents and fans from both teams.

The Saints won the coin toss and elected to start on offense.

The Jets' defense sent a clear message on that first series — they came to play. It was three and out for the Saints, and the Jets took over on offense.

Wasting little time, the Jets handed off to their lighting-quick running back Scotty Plowden, who zig-zagged his way into the end zone for the score, and the crowd erupted with joy.

The Saints persevered on the next series and tied it up on a long run of their own by George "Crazy Legs" Williams.

After some stellar defense from both squads, the score was knotted up at halftime.

The kids were having a blast during the intermission, soaking up the drama, revved up from the teamwork. It was a great memory in the making.

The second half was a see-saw battle from both squads, neither team willing to concede an inch.

In the end, the Saints squeaked out the win on a long run by Frankie Mead who looked like Barry Sanders as he danced through defenders into the end zone.

After the game both teams lined up and cheered for the other squad, followed by handshakes and hugs.

A big thanks to League commissioner Chris Herry and his crew for putting together an excellent youth football program.

CHRIS WILLIAMS is a surfing coach and Laguna Beach resident, and father of four surf-crazy sons. He can be reached through his blog souladventuresinc.blogspot.com.

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