Trailerload o' girls! - Star baller fathered two kids while playing Manning Cup
Schoolboy football gave Marcelino Blackburn fame and accolades during his high-school years at Charlie Smith. It also gave him two children, the first when he was only 17 and still a member of the school's Manning Cup team.
"I was the only player from the school that made the national team," said Blackburn, now 30, as he remembered his three years on the senior team at Charlie Smith High School.
Blackburn led his school with 34 goals in 2002, helping them to the Walker Cup trophy in the process.
That wasn't the only prize for the standout teenage striker, who became the object of attraction for numerous women - many older than he was.
"There were a lot of women," he laughed.
"I actually got my first daughter in high school when I was 17. I get two girls pregnant at the same time," said Blackburn as he recounted that girls from his age group and older women, expressed an interest in getting him into bed.
"I really found it strange, but is not just me alone, it is every school youth playing football. Older woman like off dem performance," said Blackburn.
But despite the sex he was having with older women at the time, it was two schoolgirls whom he got pregnant while he was 17.
Eased the pressure
For Blackburn, his football exploits eased some of the financial pressure that a teen father of two faced.
"I was getting paid. I was playing schoolboy football and playing for Arnett Gardens FC at the same time, so that helped me." It was not perfect, but Blackburn has no regrets about how things turned out in his case.
"I think it is best when I get them early. It get your mind on a level. When you get a child early, your mind change completely and you are more mature. My daughters now make me proud going to top high schools. I don't regret it, I don't regret it at all," he told The Gleaner.
Despite being able to survive his ordeal, Blackburn stressed that he would not encourage other youngsters to follow his path, as "things change, times a get hard now."
Now a father of four, Blackburn still plays for Arnett Gardens FC and has been on loan at a Canadian Club, York Region Shooters SC, since July.
"It is kinda better (playing in Canada). Financial-wise, facility and atmosphere is kind a better," he said, adding that he has already scored four goals for the team that is now close to going to the playoffs of the Canadian Soccer League.
A diehard lover of the sport, Blackburn said he will continue to play football.
"From I know myself I've been playing football, from about nine years old, and I never stop. I don't know what else I would be doing. That's why I don't give up yet, because it has done a lot for me. Everything I have is football."