Player of the Week: Alphonso Steele

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, October 23, 2007

There are big games and then there are big games within big games. A.L. Johnson High School running back Alphonso Steele had one of the latter. Steele led his team in rushing, receiving and touchdowns in a game that assured he and his teammates a shot at postseason play.

Heading into the game the Eagles seemed at a disadvantage. A.L. Johnson still wasn&8217;t eligible for the playoffs and had to beat Sunshine on homecoming to qualify, which also gave them a chance beat Linden High School the next week to grab the No. 2 seed in Region 4. The game also happens to be a big rivalry between the two schools.

Enter Steele. In a largely defensive game, Steele ran 11 times, accounting for 120 of A.L. Johnson&8217;s 226 rushing yards. While putting up more than half of his team&8217;s running yards, Steele also accounted for all of its receiving yards and offensive scoring.

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His first trip to the end zone occurred with 2:54 remaining in the first and was the team&8217;s only catch. Steele caught the ball off a screen dump behind the line and proceeded to work his way back to the middle of the field and to the end zone on a 28-yard jaunt.

His next two scores were on the ground off of a 9- and 34-yard runs. The only other Eagles&8217; points in the game came off a Sunshine safety, in which Steele was two steps behind getting in on the sack in the end zone.

&8212; Brandon Glover