2012 Telegram All-Area football team loaded with seniorsHigh school coaches often say football is a senior game. The 2012 Superior Telegram All-Area Football Team reinforces that claim. All 10 athletes joining Player of the Year Ben Erickson on this year’s team are seniors.
By: Emily Kram, Superior Telegram
High school coaches often say football is a senior game. The 2012 Superior Telegram All-Area Football Team reinforces that claim.
All 10 athletes joining Player of the Year Ben Erickson on this year’s team are seniors.
The Northwestern Tigers bid farewell to 16 seniors this year, while the Superior Spartans said goodbye to 17 and the Northwood-Solon Springs Evergreens lost six.
“They are outstanding young men both on and off the field,” Northwestern coach Dennis Scherz said of the Tigers. “I have high expectations for our players and this football program. … These players left a legacy that we will continue to build on.”
Following are the members of this year’s Superior Telegram All-Area Football Team, listed in alphabetical order.
Also nominated were Superior seniors Jack Kline and Kyle Turkowski; Northwood-Solon Springs seniors Brett Missinne and Jacob Dahlberg; and Northwestern seniors Luke Schulz and Luke Johnson.
In the first year of eight-man football for the Evergreens, Gage Harwick anchored the team’s line on offense and defense.
“Gage is the smartest offensive linemen I have had the privilege of coaching,” said Brian Trettin, head coach of the Evergreens. “He set the tone of our offensive line on every play.”
The Evergreens ran 80 percent of their pulling plays behind Harwick, Trettin said.
Defensively, the senior captain had 50 tackles — eight for a loss — 37 pancake blocks and 3.5 sacks for the season. He also served as the Evergreens’ kicker and went 20-for-25 on extra-point attempts.
Harwick was named to the first team as an offensive lineman in the Lakeland Eight Man All-Conference team and was nominated for All-Region recognition as an offensive linemen.
Harwick also set a school weightlifting record this year with a squat of 435 pounds.
“Gage was the most dominating physical linemen in our conference,” Trettin said. “His leadership will be missed.”
Duncan Magerl has played on the Tigers’ offensive line since he was a sophomore. In each of those three seasons, Northwestern had at least one back run for 1,000 yards.
“Duncan was one of the big reasons we had another 1000-yard rusher,” said Dennis Scherz, Northwestern head coach.
Magerl, a senior, served as a team captain for the Tigers this season and was a key piece Northwestern’s offensive line. He was named to the Heart O’ North All-Conference first team as a guard.
“Duncan also played defensive nose for us this year and did a great job,” Scherz said. “He is a physical player that uses his speed and strength.”
The Evergreens wrapped up their first season of eight-man football on Oct. 18 with a game against Luck. Senior Austin Meyer made sure the team went out in style.
“Austin had one of the best games I have ever seen a high school football player have versus Luck in our 23-point comeback victory,” Trettin said. “He had 263 rushing yards on 18 attempts, 20 receiving yards on three catches, and he recorded 8.5 tackles on defense including some big tackles on fourth and short.”
For the season, Meyer had 715 yards rushing for 14 touchdowns, 195 yards receiving for five touchdowns, one punt return for touchdown, one kick return for touchdown and 345 all-purpose yards. He averaged 14.3 yards per carry this season.
“Austin is an extremely versatile player,” Trettin said. “He recorded over 1,200 yards on the year between rushing, receiving and special teams.”
As a defensive back, Meyer had 37 tackles and one sack.
“He always got the tough assignments on defense of having to cover the other teams stud,” Trettin said. “He is a game changer. I am even more proud of how he played down the stretch by playing hard and playing in over 98 percent of our plays in the last two games. I have enjoyed coaching Austin over the past two years.”
Meyer was named to the Lakeland Eight Man All-Conference first team as a defensive back.
A family tradition carried on this year as yet another Miesbauer donned the Tigers’ No. 44 jersey.
Justin Miesbauer, a senior, continued in the footsteps of his brother and father this season as a hard-hitting team leader.
“He set the tone for each game with his physical play,” Scherz said.
Miesbauer was a team captain for the Tigers and led Northwestern in total tackles with 78. Scherz called the linebacker an “excellent tackler” with great strength and athleticism.
“Justin was a team leader on and off the field,” Scherz said.
Miesbauer was named to the HON All-Conference first team as a linebacker.
Mark Pooler was a bulldog for Northwestern in short-yardage situations. The senior running back was often called upon to punch through for a touchdown at the goal line, and when the Tigers needed him he delivered.
“He was a hard-nosed player that punished tacklers,” Scherz said. “He came up with some big runs in timely situations.”
Pooler averaged 5 yards per carry and finished the season with 571 yards rushing.
He was named to the HON All-Conference second team as a running back.
The Tigers continued their streak of 1,000-yard rushers this season with Nathan Sikorski.
The senior used his speed knack for slipping tackles to break into the open field this year and consistently picked up big yardage for Northwestern.
“Nathan had a great year for us,” Scherz said. “He is an excellent young man who did everything we asked.”
Sikorski averaged 112 yards rushing per game for the Tigers and finished the season with 1,016 yards on the ground.
Sikorski was named to the HON All-Conference first team as a running back.
Spencer Urban has started the past two and half season at quarterback for the Superior Spartans. The senior spent the summer prior to his final season preparing with teammates in the weight room, at tournaments and at camps.
For the season, Urban had 957 yards passing for six touchdowns and 205 yards rushing.
“Spencer is a gifted athlete,” said Bob DeMeyer, Superior head coach. “Our offensive stats do not indicate the caliber of quarterback he is and the potential he has to play the position. He has the size, strength and footwork to play collegiately and has drawn interest from several schools.”
Urban also spent time at de fensive back for the Spartans this season, where DeMeyer said the senior shut down “some of the top wide outs in the conference.”
Urban was named an honorable mention pick on this year’s Big Rivers Conference All-Conference team.
Wherever Anthony Valentine plays, Coach DeMeyer can count on the senior to be “explosive, fast and physical.”
Valentine spent most of his time at linebacker this season and was second on the team in total tackles with an average of nine per game. He ended the year with 50 solo tackles and 31 assists.
“For two years he played with his hand on the ground as a defensive end and was a force as a pass rusher and run stopper. This year we moved him to inside linebacker to better utilize his skills in our new scheme,” DeMeyer said. “In my opinion, Anthony was as good as any other defensive player in our league. He will play college football and be very successful.”
Valentine also assisted on the other side of the ball. He had 108 yards receiving and 70 yards rushing for Superior.
“He was a three-year starter on the defensive side who came over and helped us on offense this season,” DeMeyer said. “He didn’t have a ton of carries or receptions as a slot; however, when he did he made big plays and he was dominant as a blocker.”
Valentine was named to the BRC All-Conference second team defense.
Among Superior’s linemen, Willie Wells stood out this season at defensive end.
“He is extremely athletic and versatile,” DeMeyer said. “As in past years he played defensive back and linebacker. He brings the intensity and physicality necessary every play on Friday nights.”
Wells earned second team BRC All-Conference recognition as a defensive linemen. DeMeyer said what set him apart was his competitive drive.
“He takes a lot of pride in what he does and he’s a competitor,” DeMeyer said. “If you beat him once he’s going to make sure it won’t happen again.
“As a defensive end in our scheme, he was a great pass rusher and run stopper. He was very consistent and he made some huge plays for us when we needed a stop or a sack.”
Brandon Wilcox is a comeback story for the Evergreens.
He missed most of last season with a leg injury, but he rebounded for his senior year with a long summer spent in the weight room.
“He set the school’s power clean record at 265,” Trettin said.
On the field, Wilcox excelled at fullback and middle linebacker and served as a team captain.
He finished with 11 rushing touchdowns and 1,096 yards on the ground, averaging about 6.4 yards per carry. He also added one receiving touchdown and averaged 38.5 per punt as a punter.
Wilcox was named to the Lakeland Eight Man All-Conference first team as a running back.
“Brandon was our workhorse this year,” Trettin said. “We have had three running backs over the past two years eclipse the 1,000-yard barrier, and Brandon only had eight games to do that in.”
At linebacker, Wilcox made 80 tackles — five for a loss. He also added a sack, forced fumble and a fumble recovery for a touchdown.
“Brandon is a great kid with a great personality,” Trettin said. “His leadership style on the field is very encouraging and our younger athletes look up to him.”