The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

AK four-peats as SE flag football champions

By Eric Poe/sports editor

The SE flag football championship had a thrilling conclusion with Kevin Tran catching the winning touchdown pass for AK as time expired for the 32-26 win over So Icey and a spot in the District Cup Nov. 19.

The play came minutes after So Icey had capped a momentum-shifting second half by tying the game at 26 after being down 14 points at halftime.

The game started quickly with Tran scoring a 55-yard catch and run for the first score, putting AK up 6-0.

The first drive for So Icey resulted in an interception by Quang Nguyen. The pick was one play after Montai Surrel dropped a wide open pass that would have resulted in a touchdown.

“The ball was wobbling,” he said.

Kelly Tran caught another pass from Nguyen for a touchdown. The one-point conversion was made, and AK was out to a quick 13-0 lead. 

So Icey answered with a one-yard touchdown pass from Brandon Riley to his brother, Chris, to pull within a touchdown at 13-6.

Joe Tran scored on two touchdown passes on either side of a So Icey three-and-out near the end of the second half to put AK up 26-6. Surrel then added another touchdown reception on the last play of the half, cutting AK’s lead to 14 points at 26-12.

The second half was a different story with So Icey coming out firing on all cylinders. Its first drive resulted in a Chris Riley touchdown catch down the left side. AK got the ball back but didn’t do much with it, going three-and-out.

So Icey got the ball back and moved to the opponents’ 20-yard line.

On the next play, Surrel received a lateral from quarterback Brandon Riley and, while avoiding an oncoming rusher, threw up a prayer into the end zone into a throng of players. Riley somehow came down with the ball and the touchdown. The sidelines went crazy. The game was tied 26-26.

Chris Riley said he managed to get a hand on the touchdown catch.

“I knew if I couldn’t get to it, I’d tip it at least,” he said.

Both teams’ next drives stalled, leaving the ball in AK’s hand for the final drive of the game. The game clock expired on the final play, a Joe Tran run to the 10-yard line, but a penalty was called on So Icey for grabbing Joe Tran’s jersey.

With the ball at the five-yard line and one play to score, Nguyen found Kevin Tran in the end zone for AK to win, 32-26, capping off an amazing game.

So Icey’s Brandon Riley wasn’t too distraught after his team’s loss.

“We did spectacular. It was a real good game,” he said.

AK will go on to its fourth straight District Cup, hoping to win it for the fourth time. Joe Tran speculated why his team has been so successful.

“Chemistry, I guess. We’ve just been playing with each other for a long time,” he said.

The championship game capped off the final day of football on SE with two semifinal games being played.

The first semifinal was played between So Icey and Noobs. Noobs, after its solid display last weekend, struggled with So Icey’s intensity and speed.

So Icey safety and receiver Surrel set the tone early, intercepting Mariano Marquez’s pass on the second play, then recording a touchdown catch on the very next play. Surrel finished the game with three touchdown catches and two interceptions.

Two other receivers got into the act for So Icey with Chris Riley and Ray Scott making key catches, including two one-handed touchdown catches for Scott.

“Both [passes] were pretty high,” he said. “Luckily, I got a hand on them and tipped them back into my hands.”

So Icey got the shutout and won 35-0, clinching their spot in the finals.

The second semifinal featured Goon Squad pitted against AK, who started the game one player down with only three. As a result, Goon Squad jumped to an early 8-0 lead.

That all changed, however, once Joe Tran arrived, filling out the team.

“He’s [Joe Tran] their weapon,” Scott said.

The introduction of Joe Tran changed the game as his first play from scrimmage was a 55-yard touchdown run down the right sideline.

“Don’t give them any chances,” Surrel said to Goon Squad players on the sidelines.

Goon Squad did give AK chances, though, throwing two interceptions near the end of the half, one of which resulted in a Kevin Tran touchdown catch. AK went into halftime leading 12-8.

The floodgates opened up after the half with Joe Tran catching two touchdowns, one a terrific one-handed snag.

Kelly Tran also had two touchdown receptions in the half as AK ran away with the game 32-8.

Nguyen explained why his team played so well.

“We just basically did what we’ve been doing all season long. We don’t panic,” he said. “And we’ve got a lot of chemistry.”

Donate to The Collegian

Your donation will support the student journalists of Tarrant County College. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
Donate to The Collegian