HG’s Stauss two-way All-BEC first team

Four Tigers earn All-BEC first-team honors
by Greg Ceilley
of The Review staff

DEREK STAUSS DEREK STAUSS Senior Derek Stauss of Howards Grove was voted to the 2017 All-Big East Conference football firstteam offense and defense by the BEC coaches.

Stauss was named to the offense at the kicker position and earned a spot on the defense at end. He has three Tiger teammates who are also first-team picks – senior lineman Kyle Wilkerson, senior running back Jack Peterson and senior punter Isaac Dirker, all on offense.

The Tigers, who finished second in the BEC with a 7-1 record, have six second-team selections: offense – senior wide receiver Mason Valenstein, senior tight end Eric Reinemann and Dirker at quarterback; and defense – junior defensive tackle Jed Goedeke, sophomore back Kaeden Roethel and Reinemann at back. Reinemann was an All-BEC honorable-mention defensive back as a junior.

Earning honorable mention for HG are the following: offense – junior wide receiver Gavin Winter, Goedeke at lineman; and defense – senior outside linebacker Trevor Nelson and junior inside linebacker Dalton Free.

KYLE WILKERSON KYLE WILKERSON “Derek was for sure the biggest surprise to most when the season started. To the coaching staff it was not much of a surprise because of what we saw in him during off-season workouts,” said Tiger head coach David Schmid.

“Derek was automatic for extra points and we did not hesitate to kick field goals as well. As a defensive end, teams schemed to run away from him. He had the confidence this year to not be denied.”

Stauss was the only kicker in the BEC who didn’t miss an extra-point attempt as he went 19-for-19 in league play. He hit a league-high three field goals out of five tries.

He had 37 total tackles which included 19 solos and 18 assists. Stauss made three tackles for losses, and recorded six quarterback sacks (led HG) and recovered one fumble.

JACK PETERSON JACK PETERSON Peterson ranked second in the BEC in rushing with 1,044 yards in conference action. He ran for a league-high 14 TDs and averaged an outstanding 6.8 yards per carry.

“Jack also used his off-season time to get in top physical shape. He was the workhorse of our offense and became stronger as the games went on,” said Schmid.

“Kyle took it upon himself this past off-season to become the leader of the offensive line and in doing so worked his tail off in the weight room. It paid off in a big way this season and he was physically more dominant than his junior year and anchored our rushing attack,” Schmid said.

“As a punter Isaac could boom the ball. He was able to both put a lot of air under the ball and punt for distance.

“He was also a threat to run and throw the ball [in punting situations], so it put opposing defenses in a bind. Most of his punts rolled out of bounds and were not returnable,” said the coach.

ISAAC DIRKER ISAAC DIRKER Dirker had a 34.8-yard punting average and booted five punts inside the opponent’s 20-yard line in BEC games.

Valenstein, Reinemann and Winter had 16 receptions each in conference action. Valenstein, who averaged a whopping 21.9 yards per catch and had five TD receptions, finished fifth in the BEC in receiving yardage with 350. Winter (18.9 average) and Reinemann (12.9) totaled 299 and 207 yards, respectively.

Dirker was second in the BEC in passing yardage with 1,072 and TD passes with 13. He had a 46.8 completion percentage.

In conference play, Free led HG in solos tackles with 27 and total tackles, 48. Roethel paced the team in interceptions with five in league games.

Also named first-team All-BEC on offense and defense is senior Bennett Lau of Hilbert/Stockbridge who is on offense at running back and defense at outside linebacker. Lau is the only player to be named first team for the second straight season. He was a first-team running back in 2016.

Senior quarterback Jason von Heimburg of Cedar Grove-Belgium was voted the BEC’s Offensive Player of the Year. The All-BEC first-team player led the league in passing yardage with 1,217 and TD passes, 20. Von Heimburg had an impressive 63.4 completion percentage.

Senior Cameron Kirst of Cedar Grove-Belgium, an All-BEC first-team inside linebacker, was named the BEC’s Defensive Player of the Year. Kirst was second in the conference in tackles for loss with 11.

Cedar Grove head coach Dan Scheurs, who guided the Rockets to the BEC title with an 8-0 record, was voted the league’s Coach of the Year. Ryan Mc- Culley of Reedsville was selected the BEC’s Assistant Coach of the Year.

The BEC statistics for league play and the overall season are available at wissports.net.

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