Sun-Times High School Sports

Simeon shocks Phillips, wins Public League “Super Bowl”

Simeon's Alante Brown (3) stands in the pocket. Allen Cunningham/For the Sun-Times.

Alante Brown had a magnificent summer, maturing from a promising athlete into a Michigan State recruit. Meanwhile, he watched rival Phillips get touted as the most talented team in Public League history.

That hype train ran into a Wolverine-sized brick wall on Saturday at Gately Stadium. No. 20 Simeon dominated the Public League “Super Bowl” and knocked off No. 4 Phillips 21-8. It’s the first Public League loss for the Wildcats since 2013.

“We knew what we had to do,” Brown said. “We’ve been working so hard this summer and we had to prove a point to the city, that we are the best team in the city.”

Brown was 5-for-11 passing for 97 yards and one touchdown. He had four carries for 24 yards and caught one pass for 20 yards.

He’s been splitting time at quarterback and receiver for the past three seasons.

“Last year [in a 14-0 loss to Phillips] he had two big turnovers,” Simeon coach Dante Culbreath said. “He had an interception and a fumble that cost us in the red zone. I just told him not to turn the ball over and give us a chance.”

Brown connected with Rashaan Palmer for an 18-yard touchdown pass in the second quarter to open the scoring. Keontis Parker grabbed an interception and returned it 37 yards for a score just before halftime to put Simeon (3-0) ahead 14-6.

“Nobody thought we could beat them but us,” Culbreath said. “I think people thought we could show up and play a good game. But not beat them the way we beat them.”

There was a 15-minute delay in the third quarter. Security moved Simeon off the sidelines and onto the field to get away from the trouble. The Wolverines were dominating the game at that point. They didn’t miss a beat when play resumed.

“We are focused,” Culbreath said. “They were focused all week, ever since we were able to get back on the football field.”

Derek Flowers had 15 carries for 57 yards and a touchdown for Simeon. Deangelo Hudson had eight carries for 54 yards.

Simeon won the game defensively. Jermaine Thurmand, Ronald Haggins each had crucial sacks. The Wolverines had four sacks overall.

“Coach told us to go hunting so we went hunting,” Haggins said. “We had to take the win.”

Phillips quarterback Leonard Smith was 6 of 18 passing for 162 yards. He had one interception and threw a 72-yard touchdown pass to Jahleel Billingsley. It was a tremendous catch. Billingsley, an Alabama recruit, left late in the second quarter with an injury. He played in the second half but wasn’t as effective.

Fabian McCray caught two passes for 68 yards for the Wildcats (1-2), who were not able to establish any kind of a running game.

“The line is full of young kids and they listen,” Culbreath said. “When they are young they listen, when they are older they think they know everything.”

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