Orange duo sparks Montclair Kimberley Academy football team this season

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ORANGE, NJ — Orange residents Jaylen Ankrah-Jones and Kalvin Thomas are helping to pave the way toward success for a young Montclair Kimberley Academy football team that enters the Saturday, Oct. 8, Metropolitan Independent Football League contest at Horace Mann (N.Y.) with a 3-2 record.

Ankrah-Jones, a junior wide receiver and outside linebacker, has been a two-way standout for the Cougars.

“Jaylen has made great strides this year as both an offensive and defensive player,” said MKA coach Anthony Rea. “He is in his second year starting on the defensive side of the ball at outside linebacker and has taken over in the slot at wide receiver on offense.

“He had a crucial TD reception vs. Fieldston (N.Y.) (20-13 Cougars victory on Sept. 17) and followed it up with a three-catch, 104-yard, 2-TD performance against Riverdale Country (N.Y.) (34-27 MKA setback, Sept. 24). Jaylen will continue to get better as the season goes on and we are excited for his continued development on the field.”

Thomas, a multi-talented sophomore wide receiver and outside linebacker, has been another breath of fresh air for the young Cougars this fall.

“Kalvin is one of our most exciting young players,” stated Rea. “He was a starter on defense at middle linebacker last season and has remained in that role this season. He is one of our most important defensive players and had a great game against Riverdale Country, where he forced two fumbles. Offensively he is a starter at wide receiver and has done a tremendous job in all aspects of our offense, including running as a ‘Wildcat’ quarterback.”

Following their Oct. 8 game at Horace Mann, the Cougars then visit Pingry in Martinsville, Friday night, Oct. 14, before returning home to host Essex County private school rival Newark Academy on Oct. 22.

Photos Courtesy of Charles Martin.