Bulldogs honored at post-season banquet

Each week, quarterback Chris Casson would direct the offense and running back Tyler Davis would roll up the yards.

Both would also make an impact defensively for the Kingman High School football team.

Tuesday, their teammates showed the two seniors the how much their dedication and hard work meant to the Bulldogs by honoring them with the most valuable player award at the team's end-of-the-year potluck and awards presentation at the KHS North cafeteria.

"The votes came out even," KHS coach Ray Smith said of the players' decision.

"It was simple to us that there was more than one person deserving of the award."

That award capped a night of many presented to the Bulldogs.

Davis also walked off with the trophy for offensive player of the year.

"He probably epitomizes what it is to be a Bulldog," assistant coach Scott Bullock said.

"He came to practice everyday and had a great attitude and work ethic.

We asked him to carry the ball 25 to 30 times a game, block, run routs.

He was very pivotal to the team."

Another senior taking home a pair of awards was linebacker Mike McDermott.

He was named defensive player of the year and most inspirational player.

"He loved to hit and was in on every play," assistant coach Joe Juelfs said.

"He had a lot of heart.

He may not be the biggest, fastest or the strongest, but his heart over takes that.

It was hard to see him go out in the first half (of the final game at Mountain Ridge).

I'm proud of this young man."

McDermott, who is scheduled to have surgery next week, has been on crutches since the final game when he tore most of the ligaments in his knee.

When he went out of the game at Mountain Ridge, the Bulldogs not only missed his ability on the field, but the mental edge he gives the team.

"Most inspirational is more than just a rah-rah guy," assistant coach Cory Williams said.

"To me, it's how you play the football game.

He set the tone for our practices."

Assistant coach Irv Wentling presented the award for most improved to junior Shane Wolsey.

"I felt they all improved," Wentling said.

"It was hard to pick one out.

He became a starter mid-season and did an excellent job the rest of the season."

Travis Lewis was given the Ironman award, which "goes to the player who is at practice every day and does everything he's asked to do.

(Lewis) is very deserving," assistant Jeff Tallman said.

The final team honor was the Head Hunter award presented to junior Eldon Sheely.

"This goes to the person who has no fear on the football field," Juelfs said.

"His motor is always going and he has one of the biggest hearts on the team."

Also presented were certificates to those selected to the Northwest Region team, as voted on by the coaches.

Despite the Bulldogs' 3-8 record, some individuals stood out to the league's coaches.

Kingman named seven to the all-region team and had two honorable mention.

Earning all-region honors were quarterback Casson, tight end Marc Johnston, tackle E.J.

Hurley, running back/linebacker Davis, fullback/linebacker Lewis, linebacker McDermott and center/defensive lineman Sheely.

Sheely got the most votes at center, despite playing only five games at that position.

Lewis, McDermott and Davis got the most votes at their respective positions.

Honorable mention went to defensive tackle Ben Park and tackle Justin Hembree.

Casson was named to the region's all-academic team.

The awards banquet closed the book on a disappointing season for the Bulldogs.

Smith reflected on the season and the players hard work and dedication.

"Losing is not fun, but there are a lot of things you can learn from it .

.

.," Smith told the crowd of players and their families.

"The men who stayed with us, someday they'll use the lessons they've learned .

.

.

Later in life, when they come back to visit us in 10 years, I bet they're doing something good with their lives."

The 14 seniors on the team were Casson, Davis, McDermott, Hembree, Matt Boyd, Tim Bonnee, Wayne Farris, Danny Hale, Jarrod Chambers, Mark Proudfoot, John Saulsbury, Matt Temple, Josh Walters and Matt Wilks.

Juniors on the team were: Jacob Almer, Randy Brockmiller, Phillip Cross, Johnathan Fensterbush, Hurley, P.J.

Johansen, Charles Johnson, Johnston, Lewis, Daniel Mathews, Derek Meins, Nick Merritt, Josh Meyer, Brad Minkler, Joey Moreland, Park, Sheely, David Williamson and Wolsey.

Sophomores on varsity were: Bailey Blair, Dillon Jenkins, Matt Volk, Jason Lane, Mike Libertini and David Cossey.

Managers were Rebekah Dykens, Jennifer Burke and Wendy Will.

Before Smith took the microphone, junior varsity coach Bob York and freshmen coach Jim Murphy honored their teams.

"We came so far this year, it's unbelievable," York said.

"We didn't know if we'd win two games and we ended up only losing two games."