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Ayman Naser and Braeden Billert were two integral pieces in Mount Anthony football’s first state championship win in nearly three decades last fall. Both seniors not only started on both sides of the football, they excelled. Billert was a receiving threat at tight end who also had the ability to hold down the opponent’s rush as a blocker, often creating holes that Naser used to his advantage in the backfield.

On defense, Billert created pressure from the defensive line and Naser held it down at the linebacker position. Thursday, the MAU dynamic duo were officially named to the 70th annual Shrine Maple Sugar Bowl — consisting of the best recently-graduated seniors from Vermont competing against their New Hampshire counterparts. Kick off is set for 11:30 a.m. Aug. 5 at Castleton University’s Dave Wolk Stadium.

Billert and Naser will be joined by five other Bennington County standouts, as Burr and Burton’s Michael Crabtree, Jakob Crossman, Trevor Greene, Miles Kaplan and Eric Mulroy were also named to the Vermont roster.

The Shrine Maple Sugar Bowl is played for the benefit of the Shriners Children’s facilities and in its first 69 years has raised millions of dollars. It’s one of 30 Shrine games played every year across the country. This twin state game is sponsored by the two Shrine Centers of Vermont, Cairo (Rutland) and Mt. Sinai (Montpelier).


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