WINSTON-SALEM – The solid play of Salem (Va.), Licking Valley (Ohio), William Campbell (Va.), and Richlands (Va.) definitely threaten to take the crown on North Carolina turf at Wake Forest's 7-on-7 passing league Saturday.
However when 6 o'clock came rolling around, Charlotte Olympic and Southern Durham were the only teams left standing.
The championship match-up was immediately dubbed the battle between quarterbacks Ben Williams and Kevin Atkins. During the semi-final round of the playoffs, Williams led the Trojans to a victory over William Campbell (Va.), while Atkins orchestrated an upset over Richlands (Va.).
Despite the talent on both sides of the field, the championship game quickly turned into a 34-7 blow out midway through the 35-minute contest. Atkins found difficulty in reading the Olympic coverage, while Williams easily dissected the Southern Durham defense. However, the tables quickly turned.
An interception (which is worth three points) sandwiched in-between two touchdown ending drives cut the lead to ten and displayed a rejuvenated Atkins, who had finally found his groove.
After a Southern Durham interception was called off on the following possession, Williams hit wide receiver Steve Howard in the corner of the end zone to seal the game 41-24 giving the Trojans the Wake Forest 7-on-7 title.
Howard was among the many players who had a coming out party Saturday.
James Smoot, a tailback from Central Cabarrus, wasn't able to completely showcase his talents, but demonstrated his versatility as a receiving threat out of the backfield.
Southern Durham, which seems to always have talent, had a few underclassmen that could be big name prospects during their senior years. Junior defensive backs Elijah Sessoms and Chris Rivers were major factors in the Spartans championship game run, while Sessoms and freshman wide out Desmond Scott were Atkins's go-to guys.
The biggest name of the camp, Deunta Williams of Jacksonville White Oak, checked out early after injuring his hamstring during the second game. White Oak lost every match-up the division I-A wide receiver/safety missed.
In addition to Olympic, Southern Durham, White Oak, Central Cabarrus, and Goldsboro, Greensboro Grimsley, East Gaston, Kings Mountain, and Concord First Assembly represented the Tar Heel State.
Wake Forest will hold a second 7-on-7 passing league on July 16th.