Former American Samoa high school football player Gabriel Sewell who played for Fa’asao Marist, is now playing for the Desert Hills Thunder High School football team in the state of Utah. The Thunder was able to capture the 3AA state championship title where Sewell was named The Spectrum & Daily News Defensive Player of the Year. He is pictured here in an earlier game of the season with the Thunder. [courtesy photo]

Former American Samoa high school football player Gabriel Sewell who played for the Fa’asao Marist Crusaders early in his high school years, is now playing for the Desert Hills Thunder located in St. George Utah. This football season, the Junior, who stands at 6 feet and 215lbs, began the year at the Defensive Tackle position switching to Linebacker (inside and out) and sometimes even playing safety and cornerback.
 He was able to help lead his Thunder team to a 3AA State Championship title this year when they defeated Pine View 27-21 earlier this month. According to the Spectrum & Daily News in St. George, because of his pivotal role following Desert Hills run to the 3AA State title, he was named The Spectrum & Daily News Defensive Player of the Year.
Samoa News was able to speak with Sewell over the phone, where he said that he would like to give a shout-out and thank everyone here back in the territory for their help as he learned the game of football.
“I would like to thank Fa’asao, my flag football coaches, the AYFS and everyone else for helping me throughout the years,” said Sewell. When asked to compare how football is in the US to the style played in American Samoa he said, “Here in the US, it is more like a job. It is like we are preparing ourselves to play in college someday.”
He stated to the Spectrum— www.thespectrum.com— that there was a whole lot to get used to (in the US) especially the weather. He said the game in the US is also a whole lot faster, and a lot more "mental".
He told Samoa News that he has been contacted by colleges such as Duke, Stanford, Utah University and Utah State. “Right now I am looking forward to defending the state title. Soon I will be going right back into training,” said Sewell.
The Spectrum also said that when Sewell and his family moved to the area nearly two years ago from American Samoa and began school at Desert Hills he quickly gained a reputation on the gridiron as a strong, physical presence. It also stated that he tallied more than 50 tackles this season with three sacks and one interception for the state champion Thunder team.
 According to the Spectrum, despite Sewell being in the conversation for various 3AA MVP awards, he did not exactly boast gaudy statistics, but as Thunder Head Coach Carl Franke pointed out to the Spectrum, it is difficult to rack up numbers when teams are avoiding the 6 foot 215 pounder.
Sewell’s father, who boasts the same name, was the head coach of the Fa’asao Marist Crusaders varsity team until the 2012 season.


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