December 31, 2011

Rising Seniors' stars

ATLANTA - Although the West defeated the East 27-20 in the Second Annual Rising Seniors Bowl Friday night, both side had their share of play-makers.


• DB Tray Matthews ( Newnan) - Matthews committed to the University of Georgia back in August, and Georgia fans thought they were just getting an elite defender. Matthews had other ideas. The Newnan star had an electric 94-yard kickoff return to give the West a lead they would never relinquish. Matthews didn't have much of an impact on defense, but did appear to be in the right position most of the night, and showed his play making ability on the kickoff return and on an impressive 18-yard punt return.

• RB Tyren Jones (Walton) - Jones was quiet most of the night, but Peach State's leading rusher for 2011 took a 4th quarter handoff 44 yards for a touchdown to extend the lead for the West. Jones is only 5-foot-8, 185 pounds, but he showed the ability to be a physical runner as well. He was also electric in space as he displayed on the touchdown run and a screen pass that ended the first half.

• DB Cortez Leonard (Troup) - Leonard came into the game as virtually an unknown commodity, but he led both teams in tackles with seven solo tackles and three assists. He also added an interception, and was all over the field all night. Leonard showed an ability to close on ball carriers that was very impressive.

• DL Montravious Adams (Dooly County) - Adams was constantly tying up double teams for the West, and he was a big reason why the East had no running game. He also did a great job getting after the passer as he had a crushing sack in the third quarter.


• DL Carl Lawson (Milton) - Lawson was dominant all week in practice, and it didn't stop in the Rising Seniors game. He finished the game with two sacks and three tackles for a loss, and the star junior was virtually unblockable all night. His strength and athleticism are impressive, but he also has a motor that never stops. He has no offers now, but they are sure to come very soon.

• RB/WR Alvin Kamara (Norcross) - Kamara came into the game as a running back, but he put on a clinic on how to play the wide receiver position. Kamara had 8 catches for 117 yards in the game, and while he failed to find the end zone, he had key plays on all three of the East's scoring drives. Kamara showed an excellent ability to get separation, and put his excellent speed on display as well.

• QB Josh Dobbs Alpharetta) - Dobbs opened some eyes with an excellent performance going 20 of 31 through the air for 215 yards and three scores. The most impressive part about Dobbs' performance was that he remained calm all night despite an aggressive West defense. He moved well in the pocket and displayed nice accuracy under pressure.

• WR Carlos Burse (Alpharetta) - Burse had a nice touchdown catch in the third quarter to pull the East to within one of the West, but most impressive play was on a 1st quarter pass from Dobbs where Burse won the battle for the football. Burse was impressive all week in practice and should get plenty of attention due to his excellent frame and reliable hands.

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