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Local talent to shine in All-star game
Former Denair High football player Shawn Howell, center, is one of four local athletes who will compete in Friday’s Small Schools All-Star Game at Waterford High. - photo by Photo Contributed
Here’s a neat little concept: Round up all the best football players in Stanislaus District, have them put on helmets and pads for the first time in a long time and see what transpires knowing that this might be the final chance to impress college scouts.
And call this gathering an all-star game.
But the catch is that this game doesn’t involve everyone in the district — just the ones who don’t get a lot of recognition during the fall season. These gridiron underdogs will come together during Friday’s 18th Small Schools All-Star Game at Waterford High. The game starts at 7 p.m.
The event will have players from mostly Stanislaus, Merced and Mariposa counties go up against challengers from the foothills and San Joaquin County.
Not surprisingly, kids from the Turlock area will play. This list includes Turlock Christian’s Alex Holman (running back) and Matt Moreda (tight end/linebacker) and Denair’s Shawn Howell (lineman) and Fernie Lira (running back/wide receiver). Those players, and other recent high school graduates, have been practicing this week in preparation for Friday’s game.
Howell isn’t a newcomer to playing in an all-star game. He participated in the annual North/South Rotary All-Star Game last week at Chowchilla High. He enjoyed his time in the spotlight and remembers the quick speed of the game.
On Friday, Howell knows things will be a little slower.
“It is a great chance to represent Denair, myself, my family, and my team,” he said. “This week I’m expecting the game to be at a slower pace and a little more laid back. Last week I played against some of the fastest players that I’ve ever seen. This will be my last high school football game, so it will give me a chance to be noticed one more time.”
To contact Chhun Sun, e-mail or call 634-9141 ext. 2041.