Local Participants Advance In NFL’s Annual Contest

OCEAN CITY – The Ocean City Recreation and Parks Department had another successful turnout this year at the annual NFL Pepsi Punt, Pass & Kick Contest.

On Sept. 24, nearly 20 children lined up at Northside Park to see who had what it takes to guarantee their participation in the sectional competitions at Preston Elementary School, in Preston.

There was a winner chosen from each division. Leading the 8- and 9-year-old division was Jason Whaley, from Ocean View, Del., who had a 62-yard punt, a 44-yard pass and a 27-yard kick. Whaley beat out 12 other children in his category to take home the first place price. Coming in second for the 8- and 9-year-olds, was Brice Messick of Ocean City with a 47-yeard punt, a 31-yard pass and a 44-yard kick. Noah Sperry of Berlin took home third place with a 34-yard punt, 33-yard pass and a 46-yard kick.

Brady Shreeves of Salisbury led the 10- and 11-year-old division with a 44-yard punt, a 55-yard pass and a 73-yard kick. Lane Dillon of Ocean Pines took home second with 58-yard punt, 71-yard pass and 20-yard kick. Brian Carroll of Millsboro, Del. took home third with a 48-yard punt, 48-yard pass and 40-yard pass. Also claiming first place was Gabrieilla Kohr of Bethany Beach. Kohr, the only female in the competition, had a 7-yard punt, a 39-yard pass and a 28-yard kick to win the competition.

For the 12- and 13-year-old participants, Timothy McCowen of Frankford, Del. placed first with a 51-yard punt, a 60-yard pass and a 67-yard kick. Following in second was Graham Messick of Ocean City who scored a 45-yard punt, a 66-yard pass and a 55-yard kick. Also from Ocean City, third place winner Bradley Messick tallied a 46-yard punt, a 38-yard pass and a 53-yard kick.

“This is really a fun competition for everyone,” said Recreation Supervisor Rod Dulany. “The kids and the parents all get together to cheer each other. It really shows that the kids not only have great athletic abilities but they demonstrate wonderful sportsmanship abilities as well.”

The winners of the local competition at Northside Park are invited to compete in the sectional competition at Preston Elementary School on Oct. 14 at 4 p.m. From there, the winners will be invited to M&T Stadium, the home of the Ravens, to participate in the regional competition.

All of the NFL Pepsi Punt, Pass and Kick Contest regional winners from across the country will be invited to the 2008 Super Bowl, where they will compete for the national title.