To watch Grove City High School graduate Luke Smurthwaite scramble and make a play seemingly out of nothing, it looked like more was on the line than the outcome of an all-star football game.

To watch Grove City High School graduate Luke Smurthwaite scramble and make a play seemingly out of nothing, it looked like more was on the line than the outcome of an all-star football game.

One of central Ohio's top quarterbacks, Smurthwaite made sure his team didn't lose without putting up a fight in the Cap City Senior Bowl on June 18 at Westerville Central.

The Kent State recruit completed three of five passes for 36 yards during the West all-stars' final drive, which ended at midfield with a fumble as time expired.

A strong defensive effort led by Independence lineman Tim Dysart (Morehead State) helped the East all-stars win 14-7.

"It was really great to just be playing football again and getting the rust out of my system before I head off to college," said Smurthwaite, who was named the West's Offensive Player of the Game. "I've grown up scrambling around like that and I guess that's why I've gotten good at it."

Smurthwaite, who passed for more than 2,300 yards last fall and played in the Ohio North-South All-Star Classic in April, didn't have big numbers, but his abilities gave the West a chance to come back.

It was no surprise to West coach Derek Katris, who coached Smurthwaite on junior varsity at Grove City.

"Luke's going to give you everything he's got," said Katris, who is now the head coach at Briggs. "He's going to play with all the heart he has. We had a lot of penalties and missed assignments, but what are you going to do when you only have (the players) for a week?"

Marion-Franklin's Jeremy McCoy, who also will play at Kent State, slipped past defenders and caught a 70-yard touchdown pass from Beechcroft quarterback Sheldon Akin (Mesabi Range Community & Technical College) with 1 minute, 36 seconds left in the first half to give the East a 14-0 lead.

The East also scored on its opening drive. Westerville South's Jayshon Jackson (Grand Rapids Community College), the district's Division I Offensive Player of the Year, capped the drive with a 2-yard touchdown run.

"We really executed our offense in the first half, but I think we got a little bit too conservative in the second half," said East coach Jeff Pharion, who is the head coach at St. Charles. "We kept it simple with schemes and blitzes defensively, and we executed very well."

The West only crossed midfield twice in the first half.

Whetstone running back Jordan Mitchell (Urbana) made it 14-7 when he reversed field and scored on an 18-yard run with 11:35 left in the fourth quarter.

The Cap City game began as the City League All-Star game in 2008, but Anthony Murphy, one of the organizers in conjunction with Capcitypreps.com, wanted to get players throughout central Ohio involved. Players from the City, Central Catholic and Mid-State leagues and the OCC were added, with Interstate 71 as a dividing line.

The name of the game was changed last summer, when the East beat the West 22-0.

"Last year we had kids from Olentangy Orange becoming friends with kids who live on (Columbus') west side in the 'Bottoms' and picking them up for practice," Murphy said. "The guys really build relationships out of this and it goes deeper than football."