Grand Street looking for respect against Lincoln
The Grand Street Campus Wolves were one of the top teams in Brooklyn last season, but a questionable call in overtime against Boys and Girls eliminated them from the playoffs in the first round.
Now the Wolves are back this year with the same core plus a few transfer students thrown into the mix and have achieved a perfect 3-0 headed into their biggest game of the season so far against the Lincoln Railsplitters. For Grand Street, this is a chance to make a statement.
“We’re trying to treat this as just any other game, you know, a chance to get better,” said junior running back Rahmel Ashby. “But this is a chance to finally get the respect we deserve. People are saying [this] game is a change of champions, but we’re just looking for respect.”
One reason why expectations are high for Grand Street this season is senior quarterback Justin “Lefty” White.
“He’s the whole package, period,” head coach Bruce Eugene said. “He’s got a cannon, he can run the ball a little and he’s smart. Other quarterbacks around the city are just throwing to who their coach tells them to. Justin has the ability to read the field and made quick, intelligent decisions.”
And White is just one piece of the puzzle. He plays with multiple talented receivers, including junior Taysir Mack, Aaron Lewis, a transfer from Bishop Ford, Romiio Littlejohn and Kimani Talbot. In the backfield, the Wolves have Ashby, one of the most elusive backs in Brooklyn, and Eugene Qualls, a transfer student from Jefferson High School — together forming a dangerous combo.
On defense, the biggest name is defensive tackle Kamaal Seymour, who has verbally committed to Rutgers University. He is joined by lineman Jacob Jones, Abdul Ajelero, Randy Lewis, Justin Philip and sophomore Kordell Wray, who has already recovered two fumbles and returned them for touchdowns. Edwin Lee, who ran an interception back 82 yards for a touchdown last week, headlines a group of defensive backs who have given quarterbacks fits so far this year.
“It’s not one guy,” Eugene said. “We have different pieces — not just one big name. When you are talking about four or five guys getting Division-I interest, they tend to be pieces that fit together well.”
No amount of names guarantees the Wolves will beat Lincoln. The Railsplitters have, after all, won 16 in a row counting last season and haven’t lost a regular season game since October 2012.
“We know everyone is picking Lincoln to win that game,” Eugene conceded. “They’re the champs and they’ll be the champs until somebody knocks them off. This is what we wanted, we wanted this game on the big stage. It’s time for the changing of the guard. We’ll be ready for them.”
Grand Street will face Lincoln on Friday night under the lights at Aviator. Follow @BkEagleSports on Twitter for live updates of the game and check the Eagle for a story next week.