The Opening: Day Four Recap

Alpha Talon knocks off Vapor Carbon in the finals, thanks to Landon Collins and Justin Ferguson, to wrap up the final day at The Opening presented by NIKE Football...

"The Opening" by NIKE Football
  • Day Four 7ON Recap
  • Live! The Opening- Day Four
  • Day Three Photo Gallery
  • Day Three Notebook
  • Day Three Linemen Recap
  • Day Three 7ON Recap
  • Live! The Opening- Day Three
  • Day Two Photo Gallery
  • Day Two Notebook
  • Day Two Recap
  • Day One Photo Gallery
  • Day One Notebook
  • SPARQ Recap
  • Defensive Five Sleepers
  • Offensive Five Sleepers
  • Defensive Top Ten
  • Offensive Top Ten
  • Defensive Preview
  • Offensive Preview
  • Roster

  • Defense wins championships.

    And four days of football came down to one final game at The Opening presented by NIKE Football, where the defense didn't rest, and ultimately led to victory.

    The top two seeds, Vapor Carbon and Alpha Talon, met, as expected, in the championship game.

    But for the first time all weekend, Vapor Carbon lost.

    The two teams met in the semifinals of the Winner's Bracket, with Vapor Carbon routing Alpha Talon, thanks to a monster game by Notre Dame commit Deontay Greenberry, who did it all on offense and defense, with two big touchdown catches and an interception for a touchdown, with four-star Tracy Howard pick-sixing one as well off Clemson commit Chad Kelly.

    With a game to rest, Vapor Carbon got to watch Alpha Talon take on Field Generals for a spot in the finals.  A Landon Collins pick-six in the final minutes broke a 13-13 tie and was enough for Alpha Talon to return to the finals.

    And that's where Alpha Talon got their revenge.

    Alpha Talon got on the board first after both possessions stalled, with Kelly hitting Notre Dame commit Justin Ferguson for a short touchdown.  Both teams traded possessions into the second half.

    At halftime, Bryce Treggs committed to California. Fresh off his decision, Treggs came alive for Vapor Carbon, making a phenomenal catch for a tying score, then catching the extra point for a 7-6 lead for Vapor Carbon.  But Kelly, settling down, found Ferguson again for a touchdown and a 12-7 lead. 

    With one last chance, Vapor Carbon took their time, and ultimately, they had to rush things and a last second Hail Mary by Tanner Mangum, so good on Friday, but a bit erratic on Saturday, had his final pass knocked away, and Alpha Talon rushed the field to celebrate.

    Treggs and Greenberry were clearly the top two receivers all weekend, with both alternating on who was the bigger standout.

    And Ferguson, not to be outdone by his fellow Irish commit, Greenberry, came up clutch when it counted for Alpha Talon.

    Earning MVP honors for The Opening was Louisiana native Landon Collins.  It was quite the week for Collins, who won the SPARQ National Championship on Wednesday, won the tournament with his Alpha Talon team on Saturday and then ended with MVP honors, solidifying himself as one of the premier safeties nationally.

    Had it not been for Collins' performance, Clemson commit Travis Blanks may have left with the defensive MVP honors, despite losing in the semifinals to Alpha Talon.

    With the theme of defense, it was never more evident in the opening game of the day, the Field Generals taking on the Land Sharks in a game where neither offense could get going, ultimately seeing the Field Generals win 6-0 in double overtime.

    Alpha Talon and Field Generals met for the first time on the day, and in that one, it was the defense that won it for Alpha Talon, who won 12-0. 

    The Field Generals defense kept them alive in the tournament on Saturday, with five-star Notre Dame commit Tee Shepard playing huge all day, picking off three passes, including two in an elimination game.

    Other defensive standouts on the day included Oregon State commit Cleveland Wallace, four-star athlete Davonte' Neal, who picked off his high school teammate Connor Brewer to seal a victory for Vapor Speed, three-star linebacker James Burgess, South Florida commit Chris Bivins, who was money all weekend, three-star safety Lucas Thompson, four-star linebacker Dillon Lee and four-star safety Marcus Maye.

    Offensively, three-star receiver Herbert Waters had a big day, as did four-star receiver Dwayne Stanford, Texas-bound Johnathan Gray and four-star back Cyrus Jones.

    The all-tournament team was Travis Blanks, Johnathan Gray, Deontay Greenbery, Cyrus Jones, Chad Kelly, Tanner Mangum, Marcus Maye, Tee Shepard and Bryce Treggs.  

    Brandon is in his seventh year with, currently as the National Recruiting Analyst and West Regional Manager. Prior to joining the Scout Recruiting Team, he was a team recruiting writer.  He's been covering recruiting for the Scout Network since 2003.
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