By Larry Moko
Edgerrin-Williams Hernandez called it his “last hurrah” at St. Thomas More Catholic Secondary School.
And did he ever go out with a bang.
The talented pass-catcher wound up his five-year high school athletic career by scoring three touchdowns to lead the Knights to a 32-6 victory over the Bishop Ryan Celtics in the Hamilton-Wentworth Catholic Tier 1 touch football final.
It was More’s fourth consecutive title in the sport.
Williams-Hernandez, who has agreed to join the University of British Columbia Thunderbirds in the fall, helped numerous touch and tackle football teams from More win league and provincial championships since 2015.
For the past two years, the Knights have been ranked No. 1 in Canada.
“It’s my last hurrah,” Williams-Hernandez said. “This is my last time playing with all my brothers … I consider them family, right?”
Williams-Hernandez scored on long pass-and-run plays covering 55, 40 and 72 yards. All his teammates shouted and laughed with amazement about the dazzling moves he displayed on his last scoring play.
Evan Hillock was the quarterback for the Knights. He also connected with Ryan Newick and Janeil Gordon for touchdowns. Gordon added a convert reception.
Nathaniel Krbavac accounted for the lone Bishop Ryan touchdown on a 20-yard run.
More went undefeated at the 2019 two-day touch football tournament, including a 19-7 semifinal decision over the Cathedral Gaels.
“I’m proud of the way our kids played throughout the whole tournament,” More coach Joe Burke said. “Great team work.”
Hillock has lined up at quarterback for the past three touch football championship seasons. He’s also played the position as a starter for the school’s tackle entry since deciding to give up elite baseball (he played for London’s Great Lakes Canadians).
“Evan’s progression and development has been astounding,” said Burke, who is also an assistant coach of the Knights tackle team. “I am so impressed.”
Said Hillock: “Everyone contributed. Offence, defence and special teams. Everyone had a hand in this win.
“We all love the touch tournament. It’s a good time.”
Hillock plans on playing summer football for the first time this year. He’ll be joining the OVFL Burlington Stampeders.
Burke said Hillock will likely return to More in the fall and that all the 2018 tackle Knights in fact – with the exception of Williams-Hernandez also could be back.
Bishop Ryan won its semifinal, 8-7, over the St. Jean de Brebeuf Braves.
Other More players included Ethan Monaghan, Riley McLeod, Kobi Ofuokwu, Joey Fuciarelli, Sito Berrio, Zach Burmaster, Marcello Biggs, Aaron Olivera, Owen Vernon, Adam Misale, Anthony Venneri, Jacob Reszytniak, Bobby Kern, Fola Adeniyi, Josh Munoz, Jalen Smith and Juwan Smith.
Numerous coaches and representatives of university football programs were in attendance for the two days of touch action.
Burke said More and Bishop Ryan along with one team from Newmarket and another from Owen Sound will take part in a tackle football jamboree scrimmage at More on June 10.