Waverly, Tioga land 21 players on Section IV All-star football teams
VALLEY — When a team dominates its league competition the way Waverly and Tioga Central did in the 2011 season, it would be no surprise to see a large portion of that team on the league’s All-star squad.
Such was the case for the two area schools, which combined to put 21 players on the Section IV Football Conference Division VI and VIII Allstar squads.
Waverly’s Division VI juggernaut was well represented with 13 players named as All-stars.
Leading the way for a Wolverines offense that averaged 323.6 yards and 34.7 points per game was quarterback Zach Cooney. Cooney averaged 140.6 passing yards per game for the Wolverines on the way to a schoolrecord 1,687 yards through the air and was also the Wolverines’ leading ground gainer. All-star receiver Ryan Hewitt was Cooney’s top target, hauling in 36 passes for 833 yards and 12 TDs. Hewitt’s All-star bookend, Jeff Mastrantuono, wound up with 28 receptions for 367 yards and seven more TDs.
All-stars Darren Tryon, Derek Bowman and Jon Puusalu were keys on the offensive line for that unit.
All also played a key role on a defense that allowed just 80 points all season (6.7 per game) and held opposing offenses to just 136.3 yards per game.
Leading that defensive effort, in addition to the Wolverines’ offensive stars, were All-stare linemen Jon Duvall and Gabe Gates, linebackers Chris Raupers and Mark Connor and safety Trevor Nocchi.
For Tioga Central, all the Division VIII All-stars were also two-way stars.
Leading the way for the run-only Tigers were work horses Cody Bennett and Tyler Spires. On the season, the two All-stars combined for 2,980 yards and 42 rushing TDs in just 10 games. Bennett added three more TDs on returns.
Making all that possible were linemen Nick Talcott, Carter Jackson and Derek Jorgensen, tight end Adam Strong and fullback Zach Williams, All-stars all. Ryan Vergason earned his All-star nod primarily for his defense, part of a unit that let up 212.3 yards and 14.2 points per game.