Gold can't stop Blue from making it three wins in a row

By Andy Walter
Posted 6/21/24

NEWARK — The Gold team wished it could have played a better game.

But the Gold all-stars also said the Blue’s 32-2 victory in the 68th annual Blue-Gold All-Star Football Game …

You must be a member to read this story.

Join our family of readers for as little as $5 per month and support local, unbiased journalism.

Already a member? Log in to continue.   Otherwise, follow the link below to join.

Please log in to continue

Log in

Gold can't stop Blue from making it three wins in a row


NEWARK — The Gold team wished it could have played a better game.

But the Gold all-stars also said the Blue’s 32-2 victory in the 68th annual Blue-Gold All-Star Football Game didn’t take away from the experience.

Howard quarterback R.J. Matthews and Caravel receiver Trey Hamlin both set game records as the Blue won for the third-straight time in the contest, played in Delaware Stadium on Friday night.

Smyrna quarterback Jacob Tiberi, who won the Gold Leadership award, said it was still a memorable week. The game benefits special-needs children through Delaware Foundation Reaching Citizens.

“It’s more than a game,” said Tiberi. “Like they say all year, it’s for the kids. We play this for them. It puts smiles on their faces.

“Even though we didn’t score (a touchdown), it was still a fun time playing with kids you just met. You never thought that in one week you could be best friends with a whole team. But it was a great time.”

Hamlin was named the game’s Outstanding Player after catching three passes for 216 yards and a pair of touchdowns. Matthews completed 7-of-13 passes for 254 yards with the two TDs.

Gold coach Marin Dooley of Woodbridge was just a little surprised that Matthews took every snap at QB for the Blue.

“How many times do you see that in an all-star game?” said Dooley. “I’ve never seen it in a lifetime of doing these games. They had three other quarterbacks.

“I knew coming in. I wasn’t naive. When you have five Division I players who don’t play (for the Gold). And I knew who they had. But it is what it is. We got dominated.”

Already leading 17-0 at halftime, the Blue opened the second half with Matthews hitting Hamlin in stride on a 78-yard touchdown pass to make it 23-0.

A 29-yard interception return for a touchdown by Newark’s Makeevis Rogers made it 29-0 going into the third quarter.

The Gold did reach the one-yard line early in the fourth quarter before being stopped on fourth down. On the next play, however, Matthews was called for intentional grounding in the end zone.

The safety, with 11:04 left in the game, gave the Gold its only points of the night.

Tiberi finished completing 10-of-17 passes for 87 yards for the Gold. Woodbridge's Traci Johnson (12 carries-57 yards), Laurel's Xavier Limehouse (7 carries-38 yards and St. Georges' Camron Montgomery (11 carries-37 yards) led the Gold's running game.

The Blue took the lead for good the first time it touched the ball.

Backed up at its own eight yard line, the Blue ran a double handoff with the ball eventually being pitched back to Matthews.

Standing in his own end zone, the son of the former Delaware State QB found Hamlin all alone at midfield. Hamlin ran the rest of the 92 yards for a touchdown that put Blue up 6-0.

It was the longest pass play in Blue-Gold game history.

“They’re heck of players,” said Tiberi. “It’s hard to stop them. They’re great players.”

The Blue made it 14-0 in the second quarter when Tatnall’s Rahshan Matthews — the Smyrna native — swept in for a five-yard TD run.

Archmere’s Cole Fenice gave the Blue good field position when he returned an interception to the Gold 13. He then finished the drive by booting a 36-yard field goal to make it 17-0 with 5:45 left in the first half.

Fenice later added a 21-yard field goal in the fourth quarter.

The Gold make some good defensive plays to keep the Blue from scoring more.

Milford’s Dennare Horsey broke up a pass in the end zone before Cape Henlopen’s Lextyn Wescott came up with an interception on a deflected pass.

Offensively, the Gold was able to come up with eight first-half first downs. But it never really threatened to score with Tiberi punting the ball three times.

Despite the score, Dooley said it was still a memorable experience.

“It was a fun week with these kids,” said Dooley. “And they worked hard. I think they did what they could do. I don’t have any disappointments in that.

“We played a team that was better than us. They had big plays. I mean their quarterback is legit and they had two great receivers. But I still loved the week. It’s about the week.”.

Extra points

•The previous longest pass play in the game’s history was an 88-yarder in 1982. The play went from Sussex Central’s Rodney Workman to Lake Forest’s Dale Benson.

*Hodgson’s Riyke Jenkins was named the game’s Outstanding Lineman.

•The All-Star Buddies for the game were Cape Henlopen’s Gabby Parillon (Gold) and McKean’s Joshua Page-Bennett.

•After adding two late replacements, Class 2A state champion Caravel ended up with six players on the Blue squad. That may be a record for the number of players from one school in the contest.

*Fenice also put all five og his kickoffs in the end zone.

Members and subscribers make this story possible.
You can help support non-partisan, community journalism.