Tyrell Lewis was working on his end-zone celebration “forever.”
This was his last chance to show it off in a game.
Lewis caught the first touchdown pass of his career — and debuted his celebratory stomp — as Cherry Hill West beat Cherry Hill East in the annual Battle for the Boot on Wednesday night.
Junior quarterbackl Monte Williams ran for two touchdowns and passed for four and junior wide reeiver Naiem Simmons caught four touchdown passes for Cherry Hill West (1-9).
“It always feels great to beat East,” Cherry Hill West senior lineman Chris Robertson said.
Junior quarterback Nick Gazzola ran 12 times for 132 yards and two touchdowns for Cherry Hill East (0-10).
The Cougars have lost 28 games in a row.
“It’s so frustrating because we work so hard,” Gazzola said.
Cherry Hill West has beaten Cherry Hill East five times in a row.
Cherry Hill East still holds a 31-18 edge in the annual battle for the Ai DiBart Memorial Trophy, a.k.a., The Boot.
“It means a lot to these kids,” Cherry Hill West coach Brian Wright said.
It had been a tough season for both teams. After winning eight games in 2016, Cherry Hill West lost several close games in falling to 0-9 entering Wednesday night’s traditional Thanksgiving Eve game.
The Senior Night celebration at Jonas Morris Stadium brought good crowds to both sides of the stands.
In the end, Cherry Hill West players hoisted ‘The Boot’ in the air and celebrated with long-time trainer John Laird, who was presented with a commemorative football after the first quarter.
Laird will retire in January.
“It’s been frustrating,” Lewis said. “But you can’t quit, you can’t put the head down, you’ve got to stick out the storm. That’s what we did and you see that over time, hard work pays off.”
Cherry Hill East 6 0 06 — 12
Cherry Hill West 13 14 14 7 — 48
CHE: Nick Gazzola 41 run (pass fail)
CHW: Monte Williams 1 run (Ryan Mailahn kick)
CHW: Naiem Simmons 15 pass from Nick Arcaroli (kick fail)
CHW: Williams 1 run (Mailahn kick)
CHW: Simmons 12 pass from Williams (Mailahn kick)
CHW: Simmons 19 pass from Williams (Mailahn kick)
CHW: Tyrell Lewis 5 pass from Williams (Mailahn kick)
CHE: Gazzola 59 run (run fail)
CHW: Williams 63 pass from Williams (Mailahn kick)