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courtesy of MaxPreps.comMaxPreps.com
Under-19 USA football team opens with decisive win over American SamoaJun 30, 2012 The U.S. Under-19 National Team began its defense of its International Federation of American Football Under-19 World Championship gold medal with a 27-6 win over American Samoa Saturday night in Austin, Texas.
The Americans next play Austria 8 p.m. (CT) Wednesday. The gold medal game is 8 p.m. Saturday.
Team USA opened the game with a kickoff return for a touchdown and followed that with touchdowns on its first two possessions.
Florida State-bound receiver Jesus Wilson of Columbus (Miami) opened the scoring for Team USA with an electrifying 75-yard return to give the United States a 6-0 lead 13 seconds into the game.
American Samoa drove to the U.S. 39-yard line on its opening drive before the USA defense forced a punt. The USA offense took over at its own 20 and marched 80 yards in nine plays to extend the lead to 13-0 on a 1-yard run by quarterback Brayden Scott of Sequoyah (Tahlequah, Okla.).
The big play on the drive was a 43-yard pass from Scott to Demarcus Ayers of Lancaster (Texas), to put the ball at the 1.
American Samoa again drove deep into U.S. territory before linebacker Cory Jasudowich of Cheshire Academy (Conn.) forced a fumble that was recovered by Reggie Chevis of Sharptown-Houston at the U.S 16.
Scott then directed an 84-yard, 15-play drive that ended with a 7-yard touchdown pass from Scott to Ayers for a 20-0 lead early in the second quarter.
American Samoa's next drive found the end zone as quarterback Ben Langford directed his team's option offense on a 66-yard drive that chewed up four minutes on the clock before Howard Tautu scored on a 1-yard run. The 2-point conversion failed, and the U.S. lead stood at 20-6 with 5:45 left in the half.
Buoyed by the score, the American Samoa defense stiffened and forced a USA punt. The Samoans then drove to the U.S. 39 before defensive back Cameron Walker of Loyola (Los Angeles) ended the drive with an interception at the 15-yard line with 1:04 in the half.
American Samoa looked to have turned the momentum late in the third quarter when punter Shalom Luani broke loose on a 25-yard run on fourth-and-12 from the American Samoa 15 to turn the field position around. The Samoans stayed on the move into the fourth quarter before the USA defense stiffened and held American Samoa on downs at the USA 26.
After an exchange of punts, the USA took over at its own 14 with 8:09 to go in the game. Needing a score to put the game away, Scott completed 4-of-5 passes for 81 yards before Tarean Folston of Cocoa (Fla.) plunged the final yard to up the lead to 27-6 with 4:38 left in the game.
Ayers earned USA Team MVP honors with seven receptions for 115 yards and a touchdown.
Luani was named American Samoa Team MVP after averaging 35.5 yards per punt and recording four tackles along with his first down run on the fake punt.
In other first-round games, Austria defeated Panama 40-0, Japan knocked off France 27-6 and Canada had little trouble with Sweden, winning 43-0.
Game stories and statistics from all four of the first-round games can be found here. Learn more about the IFAF Under-19 World Championship and the World Football Festival here. All 12 tournament games will stream live here.