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Kline, Keith, Ricca earn Md. state honors

December 26, 2003|by DAN KAUFFMAN

kauffman@herald-mail.com

Following an unprecedented season of success for North Hagerstown's football team, John Kline and Derrick Keith earned Second Team All-State Small School defensive honors Wednesday.

Kline, who broke the career record for sacks at North, led the area with 13 sacks last season. Keith, The Herald-Mail Defensive Player of the Year, made 63 tackles (43 unassisted) and five fumble recoveries to anchor the Hubs' defense, which led the way to an 11-1 record - including a perfect 10-0 regular-season mark - and a berth in the Class 2A West final.

St. John's at Prospect Hall's Keith Ricca was the only other area player to make an All-State first or second team, earning Small School Second Team honors. Ricca passed for an area-best 3,361 yards and 41 touchdowns.

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Six Washington County players earned Small School Honorable Mention, including two each from North Hagerstown and Smithsburg.

Hubs running back Bryan Slater and kicker Brent Toms were selected. Slater rushed for a team-leading 1,018 yards - averaging 9.7 yards per carry as North's top big-play threat - and tied for the area lead with 16 rushing touchdowns. Toms set North's single-season record for PATs.

Leopards linebacker Matt Feiser and defensive back T.J. Bowser were selected. Feiser led Smithsburg with 136 tackles and added four fumble recoveries and two interceptions. Bowser led the area with seven interceptions.

South Hagerstown defensive back David Miner and Hancock linebacker Jordan Sterner were also selected. Miner had two interceptions and most teams stayed away from his side of the field. Sterner led the Panthers with 116 tackles.

Walkersville placed five players - running back Antoine Crawford, offensive lineman Dan Dreisonstok, kicker Travis Hubbard, defensive lineman Jayson Hoelscher and punter Dave Berry, on honorable mention. Crawford ended his career as the Lions' top runner after adding 1,177 yards and 11 touchdowns to his resume, thanks in large part to Dreisonstok's blocking. Hoelscher had 40 tackles and 7 1/2 sacks.

Four Middletown players - running back Shawn Beachley, offensive linemen Jason Doherty and Mike Holda and linebacker Chris Nichols - earned honorable mention. Beachley finished third in the area with 1,350 rushing yards and added 14 touchdowns. Doherty and Holda opened many of the holes Beachley and Dan McCallion (1,001 yards) ran through. Nichols led the Knights in tackles and was past of the Super 22 All-Star team.

Catoctin offensive lineman J.R. Whitsell and defensive back Jason Johnson were also selected. Johnson made 77 tackles, including nine for losses and two sacks, and added two interceptions. Whitsell helped pave the way for running backs Joe Rakoski and Dave Burrier.

Brunswick defensive back Tyler Spurlock and St. John's at Prospect Hall's Max Morris were the other players selected as honorable mention. Spurlock had 68 solo tackles and two interceptions, while Morris set state records for receptions (90), yards (1,433) and receiving touchdowns (22).

Frederick offensive lineman Dallas Pryor and defensive lineman Tom Healand earned Big School Honorable Mention.

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