• 72°

Former Cavalier wins championship

By Kevin Eckleberry

kevin.eckleberry@lagrangenews.com

Mat Mathews will return home as a champion.

Mathews, the former Callaway Cavalier who played for four seasons at Valdosta State, has spent the past few months in France playing in the European Football League.

On Saturday, Mathews and his Thonon Black Panthers’ teammates were competing for the league championship against Italy’s Milano Rhinos.

It was a tall task for the Panthers, who were playing an Italy-based team that hadn’t lost a game in two years.

Mathews and the Panthers were up to the challenge, though.

With Mathews delivering a strong performance from his defensive-line position, Thonon handled Milano 29-20 to win the EFL Bowl.

Mathews did his part to help the Panthers secure the league title.

Facing an offense that was averaging 40 points per game, Mathews was third on his team with 5.5 tackles, and he had 1.5 sacks.

Mathews was a football and wrestling standout at Callaway, and he enjoyed a successful stint as a defensive lineman at Valdosta State.

Following college, Mathews explored some different options, and he ended up going to France, and he traveled all across Europe for games.