Northeast Florida Sports Jacksonville

Pop Warner Super Bowl 59: Forest View falls to Virginia Beach

It was an incredible run by the Junior Pee Wee Forestview Steelers this year, but that run came to an end today in the Super Bowl of Pop Warner. The Forestview Steelers fell to the Virginia Beach Mustangs 12-8 falling just short of becoming Super Bowl Champions.

The game began as one would’ve predicted with two teams as powerful as the Steelers and the Mustangs, with both defenses forcing punts on the first couple of possessions. However, the Mustangs were able to gain a couple of first downs to sway field position. IMG_6420 (800x533)Midway through the first quarter, Quran Boyd took the end around sweep 20 yards for the game’s first score. Boyd out raced Steeler defenders to the corner of the endzone, following the great blocks of his pulling offensive linemen. The score broke the ice of an otherwise frozen first quarter. The next play would shatter the ice.

Forestview’s Freddie Manning recieved the handoff and raced 60 yards on their next possession to set up the Steelers first and goal from the 10 yard line. Forestview would try running Manning again who pound it to the two yard line, but Va Beach would hold, setting up a 4th down. IMG_6437 (800x533)On fourth down, Manning received the ball up the middle and was belted by #24 DantePonder for the Mustangs. But Manning was able to reach the ball across the plane before being knocked backwards, and Forestview was on the board. The two point kick was good and Forestview led 8-6.

The game would sway back and forth for the remainder of the first half as both teams jockeyed for position. The Steelers would pin Va. Beach deep in their own territory but the Mustangs did not fall prey to making a mistake before the half. They ran the clock down to zeros and were content with trailing 8-6 at the half. Coach Wallace, Head Coach of the Mustangs wasn’t surprised at the first half results.

” They were exactly what we expected.. very fast and physical” – Coach Wallace

Forestview needed to duplicate their efforts for one more half to bring home the championship, and the third quarter and most of the fourth seemed to fall into their favor. Both teams came out into the second half attempting to establish the run. IMG_6502 (800x533)The Steelers switched from a dose of #3 Manning and #4 Leggett to #11 Bell who provided a bigger punch up the middle. But after gaining a few first downs the Mustangs defensive line stiffened forcing a fourth down and punt.

The Steelers defense completely shut down the Mustangs in the third quarter. Va Beach attempted to hit a big play to Boyd on 4th down but the pass down the middle was over thrown out of the reach of the intended receiver. The Mustangs failed to complete a single pass in the game.

In the fourth, both teams began to move the ball more on offense than in the third. The Mustangs crossed midfield and attempted to convert on downs but was stopped by Forestview. The Mustangs were persistent in attempting to run the ball on end arounds.IMG_6527 (800x533) It would be a calculated strategy to suck the Steeler defense in tight. It failed in the beginning drives of the third and VA was forced to give the ball back to Forestview. And it seemed like the Mustangs would not have an opportunity on offense when Forestview bust a long run to the outside by Manning and then Leggett. Leggett seemed like he was going to score as he raced to the left sideline, but Va Beach possessed blazing speed in the secondary as they ran down two big plays from Forestview. The stop saved the game as the next play, Forestview’s Manning took the hand off up the middle gaining ten yards but as he fought for extra yards was stripped by LB #24 Ponder, and the ball was recovered by the Mustangs.

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On the next play Quran Boyd went right as if he was receiving the end around sweep but turned back left to get the handoff sweep to the left. IMG_6537 (800x533)It was a very clever play that seemed to stun the Steelers. Boyd ran deep around the left side around several Steeler defenders, then turned the corner kicking it into another gear down the left sideline in front of the Forestview bench. He outraced every Forestview defender to the end zone scoring the eventual game winning touchdown. The Mustangs would get a sack and turnover on downs the next possession and take a knee to seal the win and the 2015 Pop Warner 59 Super Bowl.

Quran Boyd, a player who only played recreational football before this year, played like a tackle football veteran. He was the star of stars amongst the many stars of the afternoon. Asked what he was thinking during the game deciding touchdown he simply replie.. ” Touchdown”. IMG_6610 (800x533)It indeed was a touchdown and the play of the game. and the play would not have been possible without the heads up play of Dante Ponder. Ponder was the unsung hero of the game. He created havoc on defense and ran the ball hard on offense. He even had a key block on Boyd’s 80 yarder to spring him for the touchdown. Boyd, Ponder, and the Mustangs lead by Coach Wallace, your 2015 Junior Pee Wee Pop Warner Super Bowl Champions!

 

As for Forestview the season ended in a way they did not intend. After a season that saw them go undefeated, and hold all opponents to a combined two touchdowns, ironically it was only two touchdowns that did them in. For Coach Wesley it was a tough loss but he was extremely optimistic about the team’s future.

” I love you Forestview and we will be back!”

A great season by a great team that represented Jacksonville, North East Florida, and the South East Region well!

Check out the photo gallery from the game below. And don’t forget to check back with Duval Sports for extensive game highlights of the Super Bowl!

 

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