Players from the top three teams in the Three Rivers Athletic Conference football standings this season — champion Whitmer, runner-up Central Catholic, and third-place Findlay — head the list of selections to the 2012 Associated Press Northwest Ohio all-district teams.
Whitmer (12-0), the third-ranked team in Division I, had seven first-team selections and took three of the top individual honors.
Senior quarterback Nick Holley is the D-I offensive player of the year, senior linebacker Jack Linch is the defensive player of the year, and first-year Panthers head man Jerry Bell is the coach of the year.
Also named to the first team from Whitmer were senior offensive lineman Eric Hart, senior defensive linemen Marquise Moore and JoeNathan Mayes, senior linebacker Nate Holley, and junior defensive back Marcus Elliott.
The all-district teams were selected by a 10-member media panel in Findlay on Monday.
Central (11-1), the fourth-ranked team in Division II, has five seniors on the first team — Keith Towbridge (tight end), Jeff Dew (offensive lineman), Amir Edwards (running back), Jon Perrin (defensive lineman), and Jayme Thompson (defensive back). The other Irish first-team picks are juniors DeShone Kizer (quarterback) and Zach Harmon (offensive line).
Whitmer and Central remain alive in the D-I and D-II playoffs, respectively.
Findlay’s seven first-team selections in Division I include six seniors — receiver Jimmy Orwick, offensive lineman Bryce Burnside, running back Vance Settlemire, linebacker Devin Dennard, and defensive backs Joseph Davidson and Austin Niswander.
The Trojans’ other first-teamer is freshman placekicker Grant McKinniss.
Other first-team picks in Division I include St. John’s Jesuit seniors Liam Allen at receiver, and Matt Miller as an offensive lineman (D-I lineman of the year); Anthony Wayne seniors Grant Judson (offensive line), Jordan Connor (defensive line) and Ose Omofoma (defensive back), and juniors Sam Bruno (running back) and Jake Hartbarger (punter); Bowsher senior Matt Fields (offensive line), Waite senior Cyrron Barringer (running back), and Southview senior Ryan Stout (defensive line).
The Division II first-team contingent includes Perrysburg senior linebacker Kyle Durham, St. Francis de Sales junior receiver Andrew Bonfiglio, and Clay senior defensive lineman Jarred Gray.
In Division III, Northern Lakes League champion Napoleon (11-0-1), Ohio's top-ranked team in that division, has five players on the first team, including district lineman of the year Lucas Kolbe.
Joining Kolbe are fellow seniors Jordan Lauf (receiver), Max Westhoven (linebacker), and David Yunker (defensive back), along with junior Bryant Schlade (defensive lineman). The Wildcats’ Tory Strock shares D-III coach of the year honors with Bryan’s Kevin Kline.
Napoleon edged Bryan 21-20 in last Saturday’s D-III regional semifinals and has moved on to the regional final.
Bryan (11-1), champion of the Northwest Ohio Athletic League for the first time since 1986, also has five players on the D-III first team. That group includes seniors Alex Daoust (offensive lineman), Blake Yunker (defensive line), and David Yunker (defensive back), and juniors Austin Schimmoeller (quarterback) and Jake Jones (linebacker).
Northern Buckeye Conference champion Genoa (11-1) has four players on the Division IV first team, a quartet headed up by senior running back Kyle Nutter, who shared offensive player of the year honors with Ottawa-Glandorf’s Tristan Parker, and senior Nick Keller, who was picked as D-IV lineman of the year.
The other two Comets selected were sophomore placekicker Cody Pickard and senior defensive back Jake Young.
Northwood (10-1), champion of the Toledo Area Athletic Conference, has three players on the Division V first team — seniors David Bogart (offensive line), Justin Rohrs (defensive line), and Nick Whitmore (linebacker).
Second-ranked McComb (12-0), champion of the Blanchard Valley Conference, places four players on the Division VI first team, a group highlighted by offensive player of the year Jerry Brown, a senior running back. Joining Brown are seniors Spencer Nauth (offensive lineman), Michael Jones (defensive lineman), and Cody Wilson (linebacker). The Panthers’ Kris Alge is the D-VI coach of the year.
McComb plays perennial state power Delphos St. John’s in a D-VI regional final Saturday.
First-team honors in D-VI also went to Ottawa Hills senior place-kicker Michael Geiger.
Contact Steve Junga at: email@example.com, or 419-724-6461 or on Twitter@JungaBlade.