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Uni Boasts Two Gridiron All Stars for Winning South Team in All-Star Classic

Daryl Bogard, UNI Football Boosters

Game Date: February 3, 2024 7:00PM PST | Photography by : JPWest Media

 

The South squad defeated the North team, 28-0, for the 9th consecutive time in 64th Annual Orange County All-Star Classic held at Lebard Stadium at Orange Coast College on Saturday evening, Friday, February 3.  Included on the winning team were two Uni Seniors, wide receiver Blaine Anderson and quarterback Koa Saito.


Mission Viejo middle linebacker Jack Matranga picked off two North passes, the first of which was a pick six, to open the scoring in the first quarter.  The South followed with another first stanza score on a long touchdown pass from Max Ruff (St. Margaret’s) to Edison’s Mason York.  After a scoreless second quarter, the South led 14-0.


Anderson wore his usual #1 jersey and was targeted four times, catching three passes (one in each of the first three quarters) for 27 yards. His receptions included a shoestring catch in the second quarter and a 15-yard play for a first down in the third quarter. The only pass he didn’t catch was uncatchable and thrown way over his head.



Saito wore number #7 and played the pivot position for three different series. He did carry the ball once for a one yard gain, but did not throw a pass.


Ruff connected with York on another 37-yard strike in the 3rd quarter. A light rain fell much of the second half. Edison linebacker Daniel Bruce Fisi’hoi Hansen lined up at running back for one play in the fourth quarter, took a handoff from Saito and promptly ran off right tackle virtually untouched for a 40-yard score. Capo Valley’s Dylan Fingersh followed with his fourth successful extra point kick to put the South up 28-0. The game was marked by several skirmishes. After a fracas with 5:29 left in the fourth quarter, the officials had had enough and called the game.


This was the first time in recent memory that University has had two players play in this prestigious event.  University brought a contingent of some three dozen fans consisting of players , coaches, family members and other supporters.



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