Even Tim Hawthorne was smiling despite not catching a pass on Saturday night. The bluechip wide receiver recruit from Homewood, who racked up huge numbers the past two seasons for the state champion Patriots, was asked the last time he played a football game in which he didn't catch a pass?
"To be honest, I don't really remember it happening before in my high school career," he said. "The most important thing was the ‘W" on the scoreboard and I am well pleased with that.
Tim Hawthorne jumps to try to haul in an overthrown pass, but had no shot to catch the football. The Alabama All-Stars only managed to complete six passes in the game and netted just 52 passing yards. On other occasions when he was open, the passes weren't on target or went elsewhere.
"The all-star experience was great," Hawthorne added. "I also had the pleasure of playing in the junior all-star game, which was good, too. This one is another chance to make more friends. I wouldn't change it for anything."
Auburn signee Terrell Zachery of Wadley scored the first and what turned out to be the winning touchdown for the home team putting the Alabama All-Stars ahead 7-3 in opening quarter.
Zachery, the all-time leading receiver in state high school history, caught a 12-yard pass from American Christian QB Chris Smelley of Tuscaloosa, a South Carolina signee, with 32 seconds left in the first quarter.
Zachery caught the ball in traffic over the middle and fought in to the end zone to cap a seven-play, 41-yard drive that produced almost half of Alabama's total yardage for the entire night.
Terrell Zachery is shown on the sideline at Ladd-Peebles Stadium. He had one catch for 12 yards, but it went for a score.
The Mississippi All-Stars held a 214-93 edge in total offense. The Alabama team helped itself with just one turnover compared to three for the visitors.
Another Auburn signee, Zaccheus Etheridge of Charles Henderson High in Troy, was flagged for a pair of pass interference calls, but said he felt okay about his performance. "I played pretty good except for one deep ball," he said.
Zaccheus Etheridge takes a water break while his offensive teammates try to move the football.
Etheridge and his three all-star teammates plan to move to the Auburn campus on June 11th and begin workouts with their new teammates. "I have been working out all summer and I am in good shape ready to go," the cornerback and safety says.
Colbert County High defensive tackle Jermarcus Ricks caused problems for the Mississippi linemen who were trying to block him. The Auburn signee only showed up with two tackles on the official stat sheet, but obviously made more plays than that.
"We just had a great week and it was very exciting," the 6-4, 300-pound said. "I enjoyed getting to meet a lot of players. I felt like I played real well. I did what I had to do for the team to win.
"They had a pretty good line and it was a great experience getting to play against all of those big guys on the Mississippi team."
The Alabama All-Stars led 10-3 at halftime and used defensive plays to pad the lead in the second half. RB Arnil Stallworth, a Mississippi State signee from Daphne, scored from one-yard out to cap an 11-yard drive set up by a Jerrell Nobles. That made the score 17-3 with 51 seconds left in the third quarter.
The last TD came just 14 seconds later on a fumble return by Captain Munnerlyn, a small and quick defensive back from Murphy High in Mobile, who will play for South Carolina. He stripped the ball from running back Anthony Dixon, a Mississippi State signee. That made the score 24-3.
In other game notes:
*Little known prospect Jerrell Nobles from Mary Montgomery High in Semmes was named the Alabama Most Valuable Player. He set up two turnovers that helped the host team control the game. The 6-2, 218 defensive end is headed to Northeast Mississippi Community College after not getting offers from major programs. He had three solo tackles, one assist and one tackle for a five-yard loss. After the game Nobles said that he was very surprised when found out he was named MVP.
*Dwayne Pittman from South Pike High was named the MVP for the Mississippi All-Stars. The 5-10, 205 linebacker signed with Alcorn State. He had four solo tackles, one assist and one takcle for a six-yard loss.
*The leading rusher in the game was QB Tim Buckley of Madison Central High, a quick 6-0, 182 RB/CB headed to Alcorn State. He had seven carries for 42 yards. He was also the leading passer in the game wih 79 yards, hitting 7-15 passes with no interceptions. Matt Malouf of Oxford, Miss., High, who is headed to Memphis, completed 3-13 for 34 yards and one pick for the Mississippi team.
*A quarterback, Donald Williams, also led the Alabama team in rushing with 27 yards on eight carries and hit 3-8 passes for 29 yards as the starting QB. The Tuscaloosa County High graduate is headed to Valdosta State in Georgia.
*Chris Smelley, a QB from American Christian in Tuscaloosa, hit 3-8 passes for 23 yards and one TD with one interception for the Alabama team. He will play for the South Carolina Gamecocks.
*Cordera Eason, a highly regarded RB Ole Miss signee from Meridian, ran the ball just three times and had zero net yards. Eason made one catch for four yards.
*The game's leading receiver, 5-10, 170 Maurice Langston of Northeast High, caught four balls for 43 yards for the Mississippi All-Stars. He has signed with Arkansas State.
*Both teams struggled with offensive execution, which is not unusual for an all-star game. The Alabama All-Stars averaged on 1.6 yards per rushing attempt and 2.2 yards per play. The Mississippi Stars didn't put on an offensive show either, averaging 3.3 per rush and 3.6 per play.
*Linebacker Charlie Higgenbotham had five solo tackles and two assists to lead all tacklers in the game. Listed at 6-1, 217, he is headed to Alabama. UAB signee Frantrell Forest of Shaw High, who is listed at 6-2, 205, had six solo stops.
*Patrick Dolan made a 31-yard field goal for the Alabama team and was short on a 56-yard try. The McGill-Toolen kicker is headed to Nicholls State.
*Brandon Sellers of Mississippi made a 47-yarder, hit the upright on a 39-yarder that bounced wide and missed a 26-yarder. He is scheduled for play for Jones County junior college next season.