International Bowl 2018 Day 2 recap: Canada and Japan notch big wins; U-15 Select blanks Mexico; U-15 Stars top Stripes

By Brent Glasgow | Posted 1/17/2018

Photos via Mike Fender

The second day of competition at International Bowl IX kicked off Wednesday morning at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, with all four games broadcast on ESPN3. Here's a look at the day's action:

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Game 4: Team Canada 44, U.S. Under-18 National Team 26

Canada scored 21 straight points to take command, and fought off multiple U.S. comeback bids to win its seventh game in the team's eight-year U-18 history.

“The guys all week long were so dialed into this game and this experience, to represent your country and come down to the mecca of football,” Canada coach Steve Sumarah said. “This meant a lot, for sure.”

With 115 yards and a touchdown, Jalen Philpot was selected MVP for Canada.

Jalen Philpot International Bowl

Three interceptions and a lost fumble didn’t help the U.S.’ chances.

“The biggest difference was turnovers,” U.S. coach Matt Gegenheimer said. “You get in these games and they often come down to mistakes. You have to give it to Canada. That was a real good football team.”

The U.S. marched for a score on its first possession, as Cody Russell (Portage, Indiana) took a sweep left for a 19-yard TD. Brandon Dickerson (Fort Mill, South Carolina) added a 40-yard field goal for the U.S.’ other points of the first half.

Canada’s Antoine Couture hit field goals of 40 and 30 yards, and after the U.S. turned the ball over with 30 seconds left in the half, Tyson Rowe scored on a 1-yard run for a two-point Canada lead at halftime.

That momentum continued, as Philpot had a 3-yard TD catch on the first drive of the third quarter, and Adre Simmonds added a 4-yard TD for a 16-point advantage.

A 2-yard TD pass from Justin Allen (Leesburg, Virginia) to Christian Dremel (West Caldwell, New Jersey) got the U.S. back in it, and an interception by Trey Rucker (Fairfax, Virginia) led to a 23-yard make by Dickerson to cut it to seven early in the fourth quarter.

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Canada’s Tyson Philpot caught a 46-yard TD pass on the ensuing possession, but the U.S. countered with a 2-yard scoring run by AJ Brown (Grovetown, Georgia).

The Americans got no closer, as Couture hit his third field goal, and Nicolas Lessard had a 49-yard pick-six with seven seconds left.

“We came down with some talented kids, some kids with grit,” Sumarah said. “They brought it, against a talented team. It says a lot about where we’re going in this game.”

Game 3: Team Japan 21, U.S. Under-17 Stripes 6

Team Japan stunned the U.S. early in the second quarter on a blown punt snap, as Daichi Kinoshita picked off the subsequent pass and took it 30 yards for a TD.

Three minutes before halftime, Japan struck again, as Kento Shibata threw a 13-yard strike to Mikito Itokawa in the corner of the end zone for a 14-point halftime edge.

The U.S. got a boost with five minutes left in the third with a blocked punt and 27-yard TD return by Patrick Godbolt (Blythewood, South Carolina).

Japan at International Bowl

In another big special teams play, Japan blocked a U.S. punt toward the end of the third quarter, and a 1-yard run by Koki Taira provided the final margin.

Japan quarterback Shota Hirao earned MVP recognition, and Shinji Maekawa (six tackles) was Defensive Player of the Game.

International Bowl Japan MVP

Game 2: U.S. Under-15 Select 62, Laguna Select (Mexico) 0

Arlen Harris Jr. (Valrico, Florida) had quite a day, as the U.S. held a 456-72 yardage advantage.

Arlen Harris Jr. International Bowl MVP

The U.S. didn’t take long to strike. After a fumble recovery by Kael Farkes (Lenexa, Kansas) 49 seconds into the game, Harris took off for an 11-yard score. Following a fumble on Mexico’s next play, Nicco Marchiol (Centennial, Colorado) ran it in from four yards out.

Wyatt Hagan (Chantilly, Virginia) connected with Braden Lynch (Claremont, California) on a 17-yard TD, and James Watkins (Dorchester, Massachusetts) snagged a 48-yarder from Daniel Plummer (Jacksonville, Florida) for a 27-0 lead going to the second quarter.

The onslaught continued in the second, as Bryce Anderson (Beaumont, Texas) scored on a 73-yard punt return, and Anthony Costanzo (Colorado Springs) did the same on a 28-yard fumble return.

In the third quarter, an interception by Ryan Nolan (Gainesvile, Florida) set up a 60-yard scoring run by Jacob Gibbons (Rumford, Rhode Island), and Harris followed that with an 87-yard sprint to the end zone.

Gibbons capped the scoring with an 18-yard TD in the fourth.

Keegon Manning (Prosper, Texas) was named Defensive Player of the Game, with seven tackles, one for loss and a forced fumble.

The three teams from Mexico competing at this year's International Bowl drove up to 17 hours to be here, so for the participants, the trip was about more than a game score.

Laguna Select at 2018 International Bowl

Game 1: U.S. Under-15 Stars 20, U.S. Under-15 Stripes 0

The Stripes’ defense held the Stars to minus-12 yards rushing and 85 total yards, while forcing six fumbles and two interceptions.

With just 40 combined offensive yards, the teams played to a scoreless halftime stalemate. Lukas Schramm (Apex, North Carolina) had a team-high four tackles, two sacks and a fumble recovery for the Stars, while Creighton King (Fort Hood, Texas) had four tackles and Gavin Sawchuk (Aurora, Colorado) added three stops and an interception for the Stripes.

2018 International Bowl

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Jourdin Brown (Baltimore) put the Stars on the board with a 38-yard fumble return for a touchdown early in the third quarter. The Stars offense then broke through with a 29-yard TD pass from Emmett Brown (Encinitas, California) to Brooks Bortle (Woodstock, Georgia).

Derrick Barksdale II (Rock Hill, South Carolina) had an interception midway through the fourth quarter, and Brown ended it with a 46-yard pick-six in the closing seconds.

Bortle was named the game’s MVP, while Brown earned Defensive Player of the Game honors.