Postseason awards treated Union/A-C Valley and Redbank Valley well in last week’s announcement of the District 9 League’s Small School-South Division All-Star football team.
Union/ACV had eight players named to 10 spots on the team while Redbank Valley landed four players on the team filling five positions.
It was Union/ACV, Redbank Valley and Keystone sharing this year’s division title. The Panthers had seven players named to eight spots, Elk County Catholic four players to five spots and Curwensville filling three spots with three different players.
Both Redbank Valley and Union/ACV landed a major award winner with Bulldogs senior Ethan Hetrick getting the Defensive Lineman of the Year honor and Falcon Knights senior linebacker Colton Hoffman the division’s Defense MVP award.
Going into Saturday’s district final, Hetrick has 48 tackles and a Bulldogs season-record 13.5 sacks as he broke the team’s 27-year-old mark of 13 sacks by Micki Fink from 1992.
Hetrick was a two-way selection as he earned a spot on the offensive side at receiver with his 26 receptions for 431 yards and four TDs.
Hoffman was his team’s leading tackler at 76 tackles along with two interceptions and two sacks.
Also for the Falcon Knights, junior Tanner Merwin and senior Layton Stewart were two-way picks. Merwin (26 catches, 412 yards, 6 TDs) was named at receiver and safety on defense with 54 tackles and five interceptions. Stewart is a two-way lineman with 47 tackles and one sac on the defensive side.
The other Union/ACV selection on offense was senior quarterback Luke Bowser (1,306 yards, 16 TDs). Sophomore Caden Rainey (713 return yards, 1 TD) was named the return specialist and on defense the other picks were junior linebacker Eli Penny (67 tackles, 4 sacks), junior safety Kylar Culbertson (61 tackles) and senior cornerback Tony Thompson (35 tackles, 1 interception).
The Bulldogs’ other offensive player honored was senior lineman Trent Bowersox. On defense it was senior linebacker Chase Bish (56 tackles, 1 interception) and sophomore lineman Joe Mansfield (74 tackles, 10 sacks).
Bulldogs senior receiver/cornerback Sam Hetrick (22 catches, 6 TDs; 5 interceptions) was an Honorable Mention selection.
Keystone had four players named to five spots along with its head coach Ryan Smith named the division’s Coach of the Year. Panthers senior Kirk Wolbert was Offensive Lineman of the Year while senior quarterback Isaak Jones was Offensive MVP.
In the other divisions:
— Division champion Coudersport nearly swept the Small School-North major awards with Tom Storey winning Coach of the Year, junior Cale Ayers Offensive Lineman of the Year, senior linebacker Kolby VanWhy Defensive Player of the Year, and senior running back Travis Gleason and junior quarterback Hayden Keck Co-Offensive MVPs. Smethport junior Kameron Rounsville was Defensive Linemen of the Year.
— In the Large Division, repeat champion Ridgway had seven players named to 10 positions, led by Defensive Lineman of the Year Gabe Watts and head coach Mark Heindl, who won his second straight Coach of the Year award. Clarion senior Ben Smith was Offensive Lineman of the Year and senior Austin Newcomb Co-Offensive MVP with Kane senior Jake Alcorn. Brookville junior Nathan Taylor was Defensive MVP.
Offensive Lineman of the Year: Kirk Wolbert, Sr., Keystone
Defensive Lineman of the Year: Ethan Hetrick, Sr., Redbank Valley
Offensive MVP: Isaak Jones, Sr., Keystone
Defensive MVP: Colton Hoffman, Sr., Union/ACV
Coach of the Year: Ryan Smith, Keystone
Line: Trent Bowersox, Sr., Redbank Valley; Jared Emmert, Sr., Elk Co. Catholic; Kirk Wolbert, Sr., Keystone; Layton Stewart, Sr., Union/ACV; Brady Rapp, Sr., Keystone.
Wide Receiver/Slot back: Tanner Merwin, Jr., Union/ACV; Ethan Hetrick, Sr., Redbank Valley; John Wittman, Sr., Elk Co. Catholic.
Quarterback: Luke Bowser, Sr., Union/ACV; Isaak Jones, Sr., Keystone.
Tight End: Leo Gregory, Sr., Elk Co. Catholic.
Running back: Sam Kaul, Jr., Elk Co. Catholic; Nick Weaver, Jr., Keystone.
Return Specialist: Caden Rainey, So., Union/ACV.
Punter: Jake Mullins, So., Curwensville.
Kicker: Nick Cosper, So., Keystone
Line: Ethan Hetrick, Sr., Redbank Valley; Layton Stewart, Sr., Union/ACV; Nick Holbert, Sr., Curwensville; Joe Mansfield, So., Redbank Valley; Brady Rapp, Sr., Keystone.
Linebacker: Colton Hoffman, Sr., Union/ACV; Chase Bish, Sr., Redbank Valley; Duane Brady, Jr., Curwensville; Eli Penny, Jr., Union/ACV; Sam Kaul, Jr., Elk Co. Catholic; Kirk Wolbert, Sr., Keystone.
Safety: Tanner Merwin, Jr., Union/ACV; Kylar Culbertson, Jr., Union/ACV; Zander McHenry, So., Keystone.
Cornerback: Alex Rapp, Sr., Keystone; Tony Thompson, Sr., Union/ACV.
Honorable Mention: Taylar Altman (running back/safety), Jr., Keystone; Sam Hetrick (receiver, cornerback), Sr., Redbank Valley; Anthony Gerg (offensive line), Sr., Elk Co. Catholic.
Offensive Lineman of the Year: Cale Ayers, Jr., Coudersport
Defensive Lineman of the Year: Kameron Rounsville, Jr., Smethport
Co-Offensive MVP: Travis Gleason, Sr., Coudersport; Hayden Keck, Jr., Coudersport
Defensive MVP: Kolby VanWhy, Sr., Coudersport.
Coach of Year: Tom Storey, Coudersport.
Line: Cale Ayers, Jr., Coudersport; Nick Billie, Jr., Sheffield; Travis Cooney, So., Smethport; Brandon Goss, Jr., Coudersport; Logan Rogers, Sr., Coudersport.
Wide Receiver/Slot back: Cameron Magee, Sr., Otto-Eldred; Caden Smead, Sr., Smethport; Ethan Smith, Jr., Otto-Eldred.
Running back/Slot back: Travis Gleason, Sr., Coudersport; Braedon Johnson, Jr., Smethport.
Tight end: Richie McDowell, Jr., Smethport.
Quarterback: Hayden Keck, Jr., Coudersport.
Return Specialist: Bryent Johnson, Sr., Smethport.
Punter: Howie Stuckey, Sr., Port Allegany.
Line: Colton Gietler, Sr., Otto-Eldred; Brandt Kightlinger, Jr., Coudersport; Caleb Reider, Sr., Cameron Co.; Kameron Rounsville, Jr., Smethport; Adenn Stevens, Jr., Smethport.
Linebackers: Jihad Bennett, Jr., Sheffield; Blaine Moses, Fr., Port Allegany; T.J. VanScoter, Jr., Otto-Eldred; Kolby VanWhy, Sr., Coudersport; Thomas Wilson, Sr., Coudersport.
Safety: Noah Lent, So., Smethport; Cole Sebastian, Jr., Otto-Eldred.
Cornerback: Noah Archer, Fr., Port Allegany; John Minor, Sr., Coudersport.
Honorable Mention: Josh Rees, Port Allegany; Jacob Disshon, Sheffield; Dillon Keglovits, Coudersport.