All-Stars Shine in Dream Bowl II

— Virginia Beach, VA


Dream Bowl II


College football all-stars from across the country descended upon Virginia Beach, Virginia this past Martin Luther King, Jr. weekend to put on the pads one more time to battle for bragging rights in the 2nd Annual Dream Bowl. Cutting Edge Sports Management in conjunction with HSM, managers of the Virginia Beach Sportsplex, played host to an exciting football game filled with big plays and great players. The weekend began with an NFL-run combine featuring scouts Raleigh McKenzie of the Oakland Raiders and CFL scouts, Bryan Perez of the Ottawa Redblacks, and Russ Lande of the Montreal Alouettes. Next the players went through two days of practices and team meetings culminating in the Monday afternoon kickoff. Unlike last year’s brutal weather conditions, the players were treated to a 55 degree day with a bright sun and blue sky.


Coach Jerry Flora of William Paterson University was unable to join the festivities as he was home with his 6-year old son who was hospitalized on the eve of Dream Bowl weekend. Fortunately, the rest of Coach Flora’s staff from the school was able to step in and lead the Patriots. In his place, Head Coach Mike Cieri of Montclair State (NJ) led the blue-clad Patriots onto the field followed by the Crusaders dressed in red and led by their Head Coach Jordan Neal of Hendrix College (ARK). The challenge for head coaches in all-star games is to meld players from different teams, conferences, and regions into a football team in a short period of time. Both head coaches and their staffs worked hard all weekend and the result was an impressive display by both teams in which every player had the opportunity to make an impact on the game. The Dream Bowl rosters were filled with All-Conference players from around the country and these talented players created great plays on both sides of the ball.


An early turnover by the Crusaders on a hit by TCNJ LB Nick Bricker led to the game’s first points as QB Ryan Gresik of William Paterson University hit Geneva wide receiver Rocco Colavecchia in the back of the end zone for a 1 yard toss. The Patriots defense had stymied the Crusaders offense until late in the first quarter when the Crusaders finally broke through with their first touchdown of the game. QB Brent Peavy of Texas Lutheran University ran up the middle on the keeper for the score. With Randolph Macon kicker Tracy Murden’s extra point, the Crusaders took a 7-6 lead. Murden would finish the day with an impressive 6 extra points. In the second quarter, the Patriots went back on top 12-7 as Colavecchia caught his second touchdown pass of the game, this one on a strike from QB Aabed Nekrawesh of Rockford (Ill.) University. A few minutes before the half, the Crusaders reclaimed the lead as the Crusaders finally had their offense clicking as Devron Clark of Albright College made a spectacular over the shoulder 33-yard touchdown grab on a pass thrown by Manchester University QB Nick Williams.


The second half would turn out to be all Crusaders on the scoreboard but the final score was a bit deceiving as the Patriots hung tough all afternoon. OT Dashawn Johnson of William Paterson caught the eye of the scouts all weekend but he could not do it alone. Hamstrung by a few key injuries on the offensive line, the Patriots coaching staff used WR Colavecchia and TE Drake Harrington of Bluffton University to help along the line. However, Dream Bowl Defensive MVP Devin Myers of Western Connecticut State University with 3.5 sacks and Silvio Diaz of D-III semi-finalist Mary Hardin-Baylor with 2 sacks proved to be too much. On the offensive side of the ball, RB Ryan Montague, Offensive Player of the Year in the American Southwest Conference, took over on the ground scoring three touchdowns on runs of 26, 22, and 3 yards. Montague finished the day with 11 carries for 79 yards and 3 touchdowns to earn the Dream Bowl Offensive MVP Award. Ryan’s family traveled all the way from New Orleans to watch him play in his last ever college game and they were not disappointed. A happy cousin exclaimed, “The Dream Bowl gave Ryan a chance to go out on top.” 2 touchdowns from Guilford’s Nick Mearite of 19 and 35 yards rounded out the scoring.


Other standout performances included Nick Williams who had an outstanding afternoon connecting on 9 of 12 passes for 122 yards including the touchdown pass to Clark and the 35 yarder to Mearite. Williams also gained 23 yards on the ground. QB Rob Gallik of Illinois Wesleyan also had an impressive game as he completed 11 of 13 passes for 120 yards including a 53 yard bomb to Joey Miller from Lebanon Valley College who along with his college teammate DT Kevin Smith were wearing #2 in honor of team captain Levi Hains. Patriots LB Ryan Lowe of TCNJ who had 5 tackles and WPU DB Andre Snead who led the Patriots defense with 7 tackles. TCNJ WR Frederick Sprengel IV, Wittenberg WR Desmond Kirkman and Colavecchia tied for the team lead in receptions with 4 apiece. While Kyle Schuberth from Delaware Valley College played a huge role in the Patriot offense with 7 carries for 50 yards and 2 catches for 19. For the Crusaders, Mearite finished with 86 yards on 7 catches to tie for the team lead with Louisiana College WR Jerome “The Tank” Wright, Jr. Shenandoah University standout defensive players were key contributors to the Crusader defense as LB Tommy Abel had 6 tackles and 2 interceptions while DB Byron Mitchell had 5 tackles and a fumble recovery. DB Austin Blashka and his UW-Oshkosh teammate, Manfred Johnson, Jr. also contributed to the defensive effort as Blashka had an interception and pass defended while Johnson made two tackles in the game. Manchester University DT Dylin Kennedy contributed 3 tackles and was a force on the line throughout the game.


As the referee blew the final whistle, the Patriots and Crusaders, no longer combatants but now a part of history, met at midfield where they knelt in prayer thankful for the opportunity to play another game and grateful for the chance to show their skills to the scouts in attendance. As Bryan Perez noted, “Cutting Edge Sports Management did a great job bringing talent to the Dream Bowl. I was very impressed with the players and many have the opportunity tom play at the next level.” As Executive Vice-President, Richard Vellucci said, “The Dream Bowl is the only D-II and D-III all-star game that provides players with a shot at living out their dream in front of true NFL and CFL scouts. This is what the Dream Bowl is all about.”


Honorary Captain Levi Hains, a 6-year old boy who suffers from the most progressive form of Muscular Dystrophy, known as Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, joined in the post-game euphoria and posed with the championship trophy surrounded by his friends from Lebanon Valley College, all-stars Joey Miller and Kevin Smith. Seeing the players from both teams gather around Levi proved that the final score no longer mattered. Parents hugged their children, many of whom will have played their last game at the Dream Bowl, and many more stopped to soak in the sunshine and savor the moment. Patriot center, Johnathon Alvarez, had over 20 friends and family members in the crowd. His father, Jorge, summed up the feelings surrounding the 2014 Dream Bowl, “we had an outstanding experience and the entire weekend was great and the Dream Bowl was a great send off to his college career. Thank you CESM for giving the players a memory to last a lifetime.” Another proud parent, Cindy Chierici created another lasting memory of Dream Bowl II with a picture of good friends and The College of New Jersey teammates, Ryan Lowe, Fred Sprengel IV, Nick Bricker, and Matt Chierici, the game’s Special Teams MVP, standing together on the field side–by-side one last time.


The Dream Bowl brought players and families together for one more college football game and helped raise awareness for Levi. CESM asks that everyone join Levi’s Fight and help Levi and the Hains family discover a cure for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy. For further information about Levi’s Fight please visit their website:
CESM wants to inform all Juniors named to their all-conference teams this season that they are automatically invited to next year’s Dream Bowl game.


For More Information about the Dream Bowl – Please Contact:


Neil Malvone




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