By TENAJH SWEETING
THE Bahamas Youth Flag Football League (BYFFL) hosted the country’s inaugural high school flag football tournament this past weekend at the Thomas A Robinson National Stadium.
The flag football-filled day featured St Augustine’s College, Kingsway Academy, St John’s College and Queen’s College on the field. The competition was separated into an under and over 14 division. The Big Red Machine took home the championship win for the under-14 division after defeating Kingsway 29-6.
However, Kingsway returned the favour in the over-14 division as they earned a demanding 28-12 win over SAC to end the event as champions.
Jayson Clarke, programme director for the event, talked about how impressed he was with the athletes from the schools in the competition.
“I am very impressed with the athletes from the various schools, the training with them and the coaches went a whole lot better than I had anticipated. We have seen a showcase of talent in terms of the competition going on and we have a lot of fan support from the schools so I am very happy with what we have going on today,” Clarke said.
He said the teams were very prepared to play and the players definitely stepped up their games in the elimination rounds and championship matchups.
Also, he added that from the school talent pool, he is hoping for a number of the kids playing to join their league to really improve the league’s talent as well.
In the under-14 standings, SAC went into the playoffs with an unblemished 2-0 record. Kingsway was second in the standings with 1-1. The Comets were winless in the under-14 standings after playing two games.
In the over-14 standings, Kingsway went into the playoffs with a 4-0 undefeated record. The SAC ‘B’ team were second with 3-1 and SJC’s ‘A’ team followed behind with an even 2-2 win-loss record. Meanwhile, their B team went winless on the day after four matchups.
Michael Moss, head coach of SAC, said it felt awesome to win the first high school flag football tournament championship in the under-14 division. His message to his players was short and simple: – play hard and play smart which helped them to emerge victorious.
Quarterback Ayden Moss and wide receiver Desarian Smith led the way for SAC. The two young athletes led the way by making big plays on the field.
The quarterback said it honestly felt great to win, especially over the Kingsway team. He said his strategy was to play smart, make short passes and look for the openings in the defence.
Smith said winning the first high school flag tournament for SAC felt great and he shared a similar strategy to his teammate, saying he played smart, tried not to get nervous and remained humble.
BYFFL will now look to expand their league and to integrate flag football into the high school curriculum.
The schools involved can expect to receive the adequate flag football equipment to facilitate the new sport after funds raised at this year’s inaugural event.
The youth league will be hosting a free youth camp April 22 and 29 at the TAR stadium for kids aged 6-17.