Gillespie runs, passes Singapore to romp at Daegu
CAMP HUMPHREYS, South Korea — Given the injuries suffered by key components of Singapore’s All-Star football team, Damion Gillespie transferring in and starting at quarterback could not have come at a more opportune time.
The senior, who came to Singapore from Richwoods High School in Peoria, Ill., rushed for three touchdowns and passed for one, and the Falcons began a two-game road trip to Korea with a 35-12 romp over two-time DODDS Korea and Far East Division II champion Daegu on Monday.
“We got lucky,” Falcons coach Gentry DeBord said of Gillespie, who’s being looked at by a handful of colleges at various levels in the Midwest, according to the coach. “He’s the best quarterback in Asia; we’ll be seeing him play on Saturdays in the States in the future.”
Gillespie helped pick up the Falcons in the wake of injuries suffered by three veterans from last year, including running backs William DiBiagio and Robert Moritz.
“Damion put the team on his shoulders and carried us all the way through,” said DeBord, a U.S. Navy lieutenant commander assigned to Logistics Group Western Pacific in Singapore.
Keaton DeBord, the coach’s son, recorded a second-half sack and a fumble recovery to preserve the victory in the first of two games the Falcons play this week in Korea. They visit Humphreys on Friday.
The Warriors fell to 2-2 overall, just hours after they learned their homecoming game on Friday was one of two games against Osan that were canceled due to the Cougars’ lack of players.
“We looked like a team that’s played four games” since the start of the season Sept. 4, Daegu coach Phillip Loyd said of Monday’s performance. “We’re still finding our way. We just have to get better.”
The Warriors got rushing touchdowns from Josh McCaw and DeAndre Rosalie, their two prime offensive weapons. Rosalie rushed 15 times for 35 yards and was 9-for-19 for 54 yards passing. McCaw ran for 113 yards on 10 carries. Jarvis Stokes paced the Daegu defense with 18 tackles.
If Daegu cannot replace the two games with the Cougars, that would leave the Warriors with just a four-game regular season entering the D-II title game, which they will host against Yokota.
Singapore football teams play regularly against their DODDS counterparts in Korea and Okinawa, and have gone 9-3 against them since 2009.
The Falcons are comprised of players from the two teams that play regular-season games sponsored by the Singapore American Community Action Council, their equivalent of military youth services. Singapore American School historically has not sponsored American football as a school activity.
Almost every year, a handful of Falcons players sport U.S. ID cards, either as dependents of servicemembers, who number about 600 in Singapore, or dependents of State Department employees at the U.S. Embassy.