By Jack McCaffery
The more head coach Tony Beaty watched his West All-Stars practice for the Hero Bowl, the more he believed he had something special, that he had accurate quarterbacks, speedy receivers, defenders willing to collide.
Then he remembered: The East will have an All-Star team, too.
“I’m excited,’ said Beaty, the coach at Chester High. “The kids are excited, too. We look pretty good. But ‘ on paper’ is always different than reality. We’ll see what happens when we get on the field.’
That will happen Thursday night (7:30) at Cardinal O’Hara High in the 39th annual game, which benefits the Delaware County Hero Scholarship fund for the families of police, firemen and emergency responders killed while on duty.
Under a revised format that splits Delco geographically rather than a previous setup that essentially matched the Central League stars against the Del-Val with some private school stars blended into the rosters, the game should yield a refreshed rivalry.
“We have been trying to shout ‘ West’ all week long,’ Beaty said, after the final workouts Wednesday at Widener University. “So we’ll see what happens.’
While the usual All-Star dynamics will be in place, and all the stars will enjoy playing time, Beaty will start Episcopal Academy’s Ryan Whayland at quarterback, while East coach Drew Pearson will counter with Colin DiGalbo of Bonner-Prendie.