The battle for bragging rights in South Florida, the 19th annual Florida All-Star Football Game between the Dade All-Stars and Florida All-Stars, ended up becoming a defensive showcase for both sides.
But it was the Dade All-Stars, coached by Miami Booker T. Washington head coach Tim “Ice” Harris, who made a defensive stand in the final seconds to preserve a 10-6 victory over Broward County’s best at Ansin Sports Complex on Saturday night.
“We were able to put it together and getting a win is the biggest thing at the end of the day,” Harris said. “Our defense did a tremendous job tonight, making some big stops. In a game like this, that’s huge.”
Harris, who was recognized at halftime as the 2013 Coach of the Year after leading the Tornadoes to their second straight Class 4A state title, pointed to two key red zone stops by the defense in the opening and final drives as pivotal moments for the Dade All-Stars.
After McArthur’s Torris Calloway returned the opening kickoff all the way to the Dade 12-yard line for the Florida All-Stars, the Dade defense stifled the offense with a sack and solid coverage. Broward settled for a field goal attempt, which went wide left.
Fast forward to 1:29 remaining in the fourth quarter and the Florida All-Stars in need of a touchdown to win the game, Deerfield quarterback Danarius Graham marched his offense all the way to the Dade six-yard line with 13 seconds left in the game.
But Columbus linebacker Nick McBeath sacked Graham and with no timeouts remaining, the clock ticked down to 0:00 before the Florida All-Stars could get another snap off.
South Dade quarterback Kahlil Render scored the only touchdown of the contest with 3:37 to go the first quarter, rushing seven yards on a keeper up the middle and into the end zone to give Dade a 7-0 lead.
The MVP of the game was awarded to Miami Jackson running back Karoney Oliver, who rushed for 70 yards on 10 carries for the Dade All-Stars and helped set up a field goal in the fourth quarter that gave Dade a four-point edge in the final minutes.