TULSA — One saw action one last time before taking off for New England. It was the final gridiron experience for the other. Those were respectively the cases for K.J. Booze of Spiro and Austin Lawson of Talihina.
Booze hopes one day to manage a sports team or be an agent. Those are some career options he’s looking at he is bound to play college football way up in the northeast at Dartmouth College in Hanover, N.H.
‘I’m excited about it,” Booze said. “I can’t wait.”
The former Bulldog standout will go to the Ivy League school on an academic scholarship.
“Everybody is so friendly,” he said. “Everybody is real friendly. The college is a great college atmosphere. It’s a great college town, but its real cold.”
However on Friday, he played one last time on the high school gridiron, when he played for the East in the All-State Football game at Union-Tuttle Stadium. The East lost the contest 33-19 to the West.
Booze played defensive back and made three tackles and had a pass deflection, but he would have liked it better if he could have played some offense, too.
“I just came out here to have fun,” Booze said. “It’s kind of tough playing one side of the ball, playing just DB. I didn’t get to run any back, but it was a good time.”
Booze also played slot receiver during his prep career at Spiro.
“The biggest difference for me was playing on one side of the ball and not being able to be effective on the other side of the ball. But I also enjoyed playing with all these great players. I usually don’t get to see this in (Class) 3A football, but there is a lot of great players out here, so it’s an honor.
Lawson, who played tight end in the game, is headed for Carl Albert State College. There is no football at that school, so Friday night was the last time for Lawson to don a helmet and shoulder pads.
“No better way to end it than at Tulsa Union,” Lawson said. “It was my first time on turf.”
Squeezing in plays in just one week was something different.
“You just got to put in a lot more plays all in a week than all year,” said Lawson, who was a late replacement for the West. “They gave us all the plays in one week, and it was real easy. It’s fun.”
It was also an honor.
“It’s the best experience you can have as a high school football player. All you have to do is work hard, and you can get there,” Lawson said.
“I feel like if you reach it here, you have reached the goal of a high school football player,“ he said. “It’s the dream of any high school player to make All-State, and it is a great experience.”