Blue Team wins bragging rights in 34th annual Cleverley Classic


MISSOULA, Mont. - The 34th annual Bob Cleverley Classic went off without a hitch on Saturday night in the Mining City. Montana Tech's Alumni Coliseum was the site for the all-star high school football game.

The Blue Team consisted of the best 8-man football players from the southern and eastern divisions. While the Red Team was made up of all-stars from the northern and western divisions.

The Blue Team got its revenge this year winning 32-16. Gavin McKitrick of Ennis earned the Offensive Player of the Game. He led the team in receiving with five catches and two touchdowns.

"8-man, it's a game I'll always have a special spot for in my heart," said McKitrick. "I love playing it. Coming out with this great group of guys and you're best friends with every single one of the kids on your team now. It's awesome."

Meanwhile, it was a low-scoring night for the Red Team, but Arlee's Ty Tanner did everything he could to help the cause on his way to being named the Red Team Offensive MVP.

"It was just something special," said Tanner. "I'm more of basketball player than a football player, but special to win MVP."

In the end, it's not the final score these young athletes care about.

"The first day you walk into The Clev, everybody's kind of on edge, not sure," said Tanner. "But after the first day, everybody was friends. This was probably one of the best weeks of my life, because I met so many cool new people."

"Getting to know all these guys that you've played against for four years. It's something different," said McKitrick. "You don't do it every day. You get out, you meet friends, you room with kids you don't know, you get to know them, you have a blast with them. It's the best part. The Clev game, best all-star game in the state by far."

Two other players earning MVP honors in this year's game were a couple of defenders. Coulton Lewis of Great Falls Central (Red Team) and Shawn Schaefferkoetter of Wibaux (Blue Team).

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