Local football player reflects on Senior Bowl experience
By: Lucas Punkari
| Posted: Thursday, May 29, 2014 12:28 pm
He only caught the ball once on a six-yard passing play, but for George McDougall High School Grade 12 student Phil Hallett, the chance to play in the 2014 Alberta Senior Bowl football game in Edmonton on May 19 was something he won’t forget.
“The best of the best were at the event, and it was a lot of fun to take part in it,” Hallett said. “I got to spend four days in Edmonton where I got to meet people from all over the province, and it was a pretty memorable experience.”
The 18 year old, who played wide receiver for the Mustangs last season, was the lone local player to be on Team South during the Senior Bowl, and was the first player to represent Airdrie since George McDougall offensive lineman Clayton Vis took part in 2010.
After making the team following a training camp at the University of Lethbridge from April 11 to 13, Hallett travelled to Edmonton on May 16 for three hard days of practice.
“We had two practices a day up in Edmonton, and the biggest thing that we worked on was just getting to know one another,” Hallett said. “When you only have a couple of days to work things out, the most important thing is to try and get some chemistry with guys you have never played with before.”
“It all came together quickly, and the practices were pretty similar to the high school practices here in Airdrie,” he added.
“There was that added feel of intensity though since you have the top players from different schools there.”
In the game itself, which took place at Commonwealth Stadium, Hallett and the rest of Team South were unable to break down Team North’s defence, as the team lost a 14-10 contest.
“The game itself was pretty back-and-forth, even if there wasn’t a lot of scoring,” Hallett said. “Both of the defenses stood tall and that prevented both offences from getting a lot of touchdowns.”
“I was a little nervous at first, but I thought I played pretty well,” he added. “I may have only had that one six-yard catch, but I just went out there and did my job to help the team out in whatever way that I could.”
With the Senior Bowl in the history books, Hallett is getting ready for some summer football action, as he will be playing for Calgary Colts in the Canadian Junior Football League (CJFL) starting at the end of June.
“I made the team at the end of April, and now we are just gearing up for the season opener,” Hallett said. “Being able to play in the Senior Bowl was a huge thing for me before the season starts with the Colts, as it was a good first step in getting used to playing against high level competition.”