Local players excited about all-star game

By William Plaster - [email protected]

NEWTOWN – Before you know it the time will come to trade in those summer T-shirts for football hoodies.

The heat will begin to die down but football fever will be beginning to heat up.

With the East-West All-Star Classic a week away and set for Saturday, Aug. 1, football season is nearly here and it couldn’t arrive fast enough. The initial reading of the East-West All-Star game sets the tone for the upcoming football season. As the graduating seniors suit up for one last go-around the crowd will nestle into their forgotten metal lounges and rejoice that football has finally returned.

The area talent representing the home town turf is well above par, and with Mingo Central’s assistant coach Joey Fields guiding the way for the West All-Stars the game promises to be exciting at the very least.

Mingo Central and Tug Valley add seven big names to the West All-Stars roster.

Playing for the Mingo Central Miners will be Zach Holt, Ethan Jones, Chance Lester, Chase Justice and Clay Ellis.

Defensive standouts Holt, Lester and Ellis will add some much needed stopping power to the West’s roster. Holt finished the 2014 season for the Miners with 35 tackles and two interceptions he returned for 53 yards after the catch. Lester contributed 25 tackles for the Miners and seven pass break-ups. Ellis held strong in the middle of field with 18 tackles.

Offensively, Lester and Justice can get the job done. Lester gained 496 yards on 75 rushing attempts and added 828 all-purpose yards and five touchdowns throughout the season. Justice led the team with 1,120 all-purpose yards and 11 touchdowns. Justice was Mingo Central’s leading rusher with 1,056 rushing yards on 149 attempts. He averaged 105.6 yards per game.

Representing Tug Valley High School will be Austin Baisden and Daulton Spaulding. Baisden is a 6-foot-4, 190-pound wide receiver and Spaulding is a 5-7, 250-pound defensive and offensive lineman.

Baisden posted impressive numbers for receiving last season compiling 21 receptions for 402 yards. He averaged 19.1 yards per catch and scored five touchdowns for the Panthers which reached the Final Four round of the Class A state playoffs. On the defensive side of the ball, Baisden excelled as well, snatching five interceptions and getting 36 tackles — four of them were for a loss of yardage. Spaulding kept the middle field safe, compiling 19 tackles, forcing one fumble and recovering three fumbles throughout the 2014 season for the Panthers.

The game will be played at Buck Harless Stadium at Mingo Central.

Kickoff is set for 8 p.m.

The game will be sponsored by the Jeff Simpkins Law office.

The event coordinator is Mingo Central head coach Yogi Kinder.

Tickets for the event will be $7 dollars at the entrance gate.

By William Plaster

[email protected]

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