After rain, thunder, and lightning delayed proceedings on Friday, the CHaD NH East-West High School All-Star Football Game, powered by Bedford and Nashua Ambulatory Surgical Centers, was played to its exciting conclusion Sunday afternoon at Manchester Memorial High School. Team West, which scored the only touchdown before weather halted the game on its original date of June 30, held on to beat Team East, 25-14, in the sixth annual charitable showdown.
Unlike the play on the field, fundraising for the game was undaunted by Mother Nature. The event raised $246,000, and that number is expected to rise in the coming days and weeks. The number pushed the gameís total fundraising to more than $1.5 million in its six years.
Funds for the game were raised in myriad ways, including sponsorships; ticket, merchandise, and raffle sales; and player fundraising. While not a requirement for participation for the players, this yearís group of 81 All-Stars had raised over $48,000. Team Eastís Tim Ramsay led all individual fundraisers by compiling more than $5,300 for CHaD. Ramsay and his East teammates edged out Team West in the team fundraising category by generating over $24,000 as a team.
The action on the field began Friday when West scored a first-quarter touchdown thanks to the legs of Bedford High Schoolís Nick Leahy. When play resumed on Saturday, it was Lebanonís Ryan Millken who broke free for a 22-yard score to give West a 14-0 edge.
East would come back to make it a one score game at 14-8 thanks to the first of two touchdown connections between Londonderry Lancers QB Jake Stevens and WR Peter Navarro. After Tucker Aiello of Souhegan returned an interception for a touchdown, Stevens found Navarro again to make it a 22-14 contest in the third. A West field goal late in the fourth quarter by Hopkintonís Henry Yianakopolos iced the game for West and head coach Jim Schubert.
Schubertís second win tied him with Eastís head coach, Craig Kozens, for the most in event history. It was one of several records that fell on the day. Stevens passed for 282 yards while Kennett wide receiver Pat Cullen set new highs with six receptions and 117 yards.
Yianakopolosí three-point kick was the first successful field goal in the gameís history.
Merrimack quarterback Justin Grassini was the gameís Bo Dickson MVP, tossing for 145 yards and leading three touchdown drives without committing a turnover. He also averaged 35.4 yards on seven punts, helping West maintain good field position throughout the game.
You can still donate to the game by visiting CHaDAllStarFootball.org. Photos will be available in the coming weeks at Facebook.com/CHaDAllStarFootball.
Check out the video below to see why you don't want to miss being part of the All-Star Football Game.
Children's Hospital at Dartmouth-Hitchcock would like to thank our wonderful and supportive sponsors. Sponsorship opportunities are available here.