Jupiter High School will be the host venue for the annual Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath Senior All-Star Football Game set for Saturday, Dec. 15 at 6 p.m. Last week, the sponsor hosted a pre-game media day event at ER Bradley’s in downtown West Palm Beach.
“This event is very important. These kids, a lot of them, will not play past high school football,” explained Brian Coe, one of the event’s long-time organizers and the head coach at Santaluces High School. “Here they are as a senior, putting in all this time and effort. They get a chance to play this one last game, and on the other side of that, some of these guys get a chance to get some film and end up going to college.”
A total of 37 schools will be represented from Palm Beach County, along with two schools from the Treasure Coast. Fifteen players in all from the western communities were selected to participate.
From Seminole Ridge High School are quarterback Kaimyn Castilla, receiver Ty’Korian Brown and linebacker Peter Sinoyiannis. Palm Beach Central High School seniors selected are quarterback Michael Moreland, linemen Brandon Hudgins and Janil Brown, and kicker Tanner Nairn. Wellington High School selected seniors are running back Jadien Durant, receivers Dane Stratton and Balitan Celestin, linebacker O’mari Burgess and lineman Elijah Dorvilus. Royal Palm Beach High School seniors are linemen Elijah Doriscar and Chris Benjamin, and running back Kenel Beaubrun.
The media day event helped the players network and helped with building up some excitement among county football supporters.
“Our biggest mission was we wanted to make it special for the wanted to make it special for the kids,” Coe said. “We thought this was a pretty good thing. They came, had a good sit-down luncheon, got to interact and mingle, and it’s a big deal for them. They worked hard.”
Everglades Farm Equipment sponsored the luncheon, and as the event moves forward, other sponsors will get involved as well, Coe said.
No stranger to the all-star arena is first year Seminole Ridge coach Rick Casko. The veteran all-star coordinator was on the first board of directors for the event more than 20 years ago.
“I was the second head coach ever, and Sam Budnick was the first,” Casko recalled.
He believes the buildup is crucial to the success of the event, and it helps promote the players who want to play at the next level.
“They get to see each other before the game,” Casko explained. “It’s kind of a buildup, and it’s going to get out on social media, and coach Brian Coe has done a great job of trying to coordinate this. The sponsors have done a great job, and I know Brian is trying to get it televised.”
Seminole Ridge senior linebacker Peter Sinoyiannis is looking forward to suit up one more time while still a Hawk. “It’s a great opportunity to be there with all this talent in Palm Beach County,” he said. “It’s great to go out there with all the kids I’ve known since little league.”
Ty’Korian Brown, also selected from the Hawks as a receiver, believes that the best players will be on the field. “It’s an honor, and we didn’t make it to the playoffs this year, but I’m proud to have one more game to play in,” he said. “It’s the best competition on the field at all times.”
Wellington head coach Tom Abel also knows the all-star game well, having coached it himself in 2014.
“It’s another opportunity for them to play one last high school game before they get ready to go to college, and maybe showcase their talent,” Abel explained. “It’s also huge for the school every year. All these young men are representing their school, and it’s all about Palm Beach County and showcasing how good our talent is in this county.”
Senior Wellington receiver Dane Stratton was excited about the competition. “It’s definitely an honor just to represent my school and my team,” he said. “It’s going to be a lot of fun. I’ve worked super hard off season and in season.”
Reality set in for Wellington linebacker O’mari Burgess. “It means a lot, of course, to be selected to play in an all-star game, but for it to be the last game of my senior year, it’s really hitting me,” he said. “Hopefully, I can force some fumbles. I want to score a touchdown.”
The seniors’ eagerness to play seemed evident as players and friends networked during the luncheon. There was a camaraderie built during the event, and players departed looking forward to the practices to prepare for the big game, set for Saturday Dec. 15 at Jupiter High School, with kickoff at 6 p.m.