2016-12-21 / Sports

Morgan Messenger and Hancock News All Area Football Team

Tobin Whittington selected as offensive player of the year Tanner Clark and Ethan Souders selected as co-defensive Players of the Year
by Jamie Harris &
Bill Sterner

In the fall The Morgan Messenger and The Hancock News sports writers partnered with the athletic directors and head coaches from the Berkeley Springs High School, Hancock High School and Paw Paw High School to select an All Area Team for the fall varsity sports.

This will continue with the winter and spring sports as well. With each all area team there will be a player of the year for both the male and female athletes selected by the sports writers.

On the gridiron only Berkeley Springs High School and Hancock High School fielded football programs. The Indians finished their season with a 3-7 record while the Panthers finished the season with a 2-8 record. On November 4, the Berkeley Springs Indians defeated the Hancock Panthers 40-0 in the season finale for both programs.

On the offensive side of the ball it was heavily loaded with players from both teams. On the offensive line from Berkeley Springs is Mason Sipes (Jr. 6’5 305 lbs.), Josh Armentrout (Sr. 5’10” 195 lbs.) and Matt Cowles (Jr. 5’11” 180 lbs.). Representing Hancock is Cam Castle (Sr. 5’10” 190 lbs.) and Evan Wachter (Jr. 6’0” 260 lbs.)

Those five individuals were the key anchors to each team’s offensive line and opened up holes for their team’s run game and provided strong pass blocking.

The offensive backfield of the All Area Team includes Berkeley Springs junior quarterback Tobin Whittington (1,588 yards passing, 12 passing touchdowns, 224 yards rushing and five rushing touchdowns).

Joining him from Berkeley Springs is junior running back Michael Hovermale (595 yards rushing, 104 receiving yards and one touchdown reception).

From Hancock is senior running back Ean Mann (14 touchdowns in 10 games, 263 yards receiving on 17 catches, and 804 yards rushing).

The wide receiver position was loaded with skilled people who accounted for over a 1,000 yards receiving. Berkeley Springs placed juniors Hunter Andrick (28 receptions, 431 yards receiving, three touchdown receptions and one kickoff return for a touchdown) and CJ Ryan (39 receptions, 419 yards receiving, three touchdown receptions and one rushing touchdown and WV All State Special Honorable Mention) on the offensive team.

Joining them is freshman Brady Souders from Hancock. Souders led the Panthers in receptions with 21 and hauled in five touchdown receptions along with two two-point conversions.

On the Defensive All Area Team Hancock is represented by defensive lineman Ethan Souders (Jr. 5’10” 178 lbs.) and Wachter (Jr. 6’0” 260 lbs.).

Ethan Souders finished the season with 77 tackles and recorded four quarterback sacks. Wachter finished the season with 71 tackles and six quarterback sacks.

From Berkeley Springs is defensive tackle Sipes (Jr. 6’5” 305 lbs.) and Tanner Clark (Jr. 5’9” 195 lbs.). Sipes was a dominating presence for the Indians on the defensive line as he recorded 26 tackles and had 3.5 quarterback sacks. Clark finished the season with 47 tackles and had 12 tackles for a loss to go with 2.5 quarterback sacks.

Manning the linebacker positions are four athletes from Berkeley Springs led by Hovermale (69 total tackles and Honorable Mention WV All-State), Cowles (67 total tackles, four fumble recoveries and two interceptions), Patrick Raymond (Jr. 6’1” 160 lbs. 42 tackles and one sack) and senior Connor Ottaviano (22 tackles, one interception and a sack) who came on strong and started the last four games for Berkeley Springs.

In the secondary from Hancock is senior Mann and from Berkeley Springs is Andrick (Jr. 39 total tackles, two interceptions and two sacks) and Ryan (37 total tackles and two interceptions).

The 2016 Morgan Messenger and Hancock News All Area Offensive Player of the Year is Whittington from Berkeley Springs High School. Whittington in his first year as the Tribe’s signal caller accounted for 1,812 yards passing and rushing for Berkeley Springs. Whittington also had 12 passing touchdowns, five rushing touchdowns and numerous two point conversions for the Indians.

The 2016 Morgan Messenger and Hancock News All Area Defensive Player of the Year ended up being split into Co-Defensive Player of the Year honors for Clark (Berkeley Springs) and Ethan Souders (Hancock).

Clark a junior defensive lineman for the Indians recorded impressive stats from his defensive end position with 47 tackles and an impressive 12 tackles for a loss to go along with 2.5 quarterback sacks. Souders also a junior finished the season with 77 total tackles and four quarterback sacks for the Panther defense.

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