The 41st Annual Snapper Bowl, with teams coming from all over the United States, was held throughout Thanksgiving weekend in Panama City Beach and featured three local players - William Hayes and JJ House from Bristol and Chasen "Chi Chi" Roulhac from Blountstown. It was Roulhac's first appearance in this football classic, but Hayes and House were veterans, with several Snapper Bowls under their belts.
The trio played for the Eastside Rebels out of Panama City, coached by Ty Steele and Alvin Bishop. The Eastside Rebels fell to the Alabama Lions in the championship game Saturday, November 28th, 34-12, with the majority of the points being scored in the fourth quarter. The championship game was played at Pete Edwards Field.
On Thanksgiving Day, at J.R. Arnold High School's football stadium, the Eastside Rebels handed the Pleasant Grove Spartans a 33-19 defeat. The following evening, the Alabama Lions squeezed out a 13-12 win over the Rebels, following a hard fought game. On Saturday morning, the Rebels faced Donelson Hermitage and were trailing 13-14 with 30 seconds left on the clock. The Rebels got the ball back and marched 70 yards - scoring as time expired to win 19-14. The Rebels had to immediately leave the Arnold stadium and travel to Pete Edwards Field to face the Alabama Lions in the championship game as the temperature dropped drastically.
House was named MVP and was a powerhouse runner gaining hundreds of yards on offense. He was also a force with which to be reckoned on defense throughout the classic. Roulhac was named Best Defensive Player. In his first appearance as a starting kicker, Roulhac was 4-4 with his onside kicks, which put the Rebels in excellent field position in crucial situations. Williams Hayes didn't receive a special award, but he is clearly due a "Guts Award" for his assignment of #6 from the Alabama Lions , with a line that averaged at least 250 pounds. Hayes put forth a stellar performance on both offense and defense in the Snapper Bowl.