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Miramar football defends 7-on-7 tournament title

By J.T. Wilcox

Miami Herald Writer

   Led by the new tandem of quarterback Ryan Williams and receiver Ivan McCartney,
Miramar defended its title as the champions of the Nike 7-on-7 football tournament
Saturday at Miramar Regional Park.

     The event, which was presented by Tournament of Champions Inc. and the City of Miramar, hosted 16 teams from around Dade, Broward, and Palm Beach counties.

    The Patriots defeated Miami Springs in the championship game 25-14 with Williams and McCartney connecting for six completions and a touchdown.

   Throughout the day, Miramar notched eight wins … including a last second victory over rival Blanche Ely in which Williams connected with McCartney for the go-ahead score.

    Prior to the championship game, the Golden Hawks impressed fans with their potent offensive attack. Junior quarterback Rakeem Cato spread the ball around to his two "favorite'' targets in Willis Wright and Tommy Shuler.

      During the Golden Hawks semifinal game against Central, Wright had four receptions including what may have been the most spectacular catch of the day. Wright leapt over two Central
defenders and hauled in the catch with one hand.

    The most exciting game of the day was also the longest game of the day as Central
and Jackson had to play through seven overtime possessions each to determine a winner. The Rockets pulled out the victory after its defense intercepted a tipped pass.

   Tournament coordinator and Tournament of Champions president Wesley Frater said that the tournament was an overall success.

   "Everything went well today,'' Frater said. "The players played well, no incidents or injuries occurred, it was a very positive event.''