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Football - All-Area Defense Player of the Year

Indians' Spangler makes memories by forgetting

Indians' Spangler makes memories by forgetting

December 14, 2008|By BOB PARASILITI

Dylan Spangler has been blessed with the attributes to make him a formidable football player.

At 6-foot-1 and 240 pounds with the speed, strength and tenacity to use that frame to his advantage, he was the eye-catcher that made coaches drop their popcorn while watching game films.

But Spangler had one little mental ploy that helped turn him into the complete defensive package for the Waynesboro Indians.

He remembers to forget.

"I have a good defensive mentality," Spangler said. "I'm not going to get down if the last play didn't go as well as it should have. I had to forget about it because the last play isn't as important as the next play."

Spangler more than made up for any shortfalls during his senior season with the Indians, so much so that he was named The Herald-Mail's All-Area Defensive Player of the Year. It was the finishing touch on a season that brought him not only Mid-Penn Colonial first-team honors at linebacker, but the division's defensive most valuable player.

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And it all came while playing for a rebuilding Waynesboro program that finished 4-6 and was a few points short of going over .500.

"There is no question that great players don't always play on playoff teams," said Waynesboro coach Darwin Seiler. "The all-conference team is voted on by the coaches. They all watch films and go 'Wow' when they see a good player."

Spangler has been "Wow" for two seasons, but it took time for him to become an acquired taste and deadly poison around the Mid-Penn.

Still, Spangler has led the Tri-State area in tackles the past two seasons, including 165 (71 solo, 94 assists) this season. He had 26 tackles for losses, five forced fumbles, three sacks and a blocked punt and field goal.

In the process, he became Waynesboro's all-time leading tackler (402 total stops) and ranked No. 1 in tackles in the state of Pennsylvania during the regular season.

"I've kind of got snubbed in the past, so I was surprised by the all-conference honors," Spangler said. "This is the happiest I have been the whole season, except for maybe after we won our final game of the season."

One of Spangler's missions for his senior year was to join with the Indians' other captains and help the Indians turn the corner to become a winning program.

"I feel like I was a role model for the team," he said. "The captains sat down with the team and told them that we weren't going to settle for the way things have been here. This year and last year, we have shown heart and we didn't give up.

"I've got to give thanks to all the coaches because they taught me everything," Spangler said. "And to my dad, because he was my position coach and our strength coach. He pushed me to get stronger and to be able to run."

Spangler is looking to move on to play at a Division I or I-AA school while studying communications. As far as Seiler is concerned, he earned a degree with the Indians.

"Dylan has some attributes, runs well and enjoys the physical part of the game," Seiler said. "But he has left this program a pattern to follow to be better with a confidence and the mental aspects that the next play is the big one."

Joining Spangler on the All-Area First Team Defense:

Ben Benner
South Hagerstown's senior nose tackle had 51 tackles and five sacks.

James Jordan
Martinsburg senior had 87 tackles in the regular season, including 17 for losses, and seven sacks. Also ran for more than 481 yards and seven touchdowns. Two-time All-Area pick.

Andre McKenzie
Mid-Penn Capital first-teamer had 55 tackles, nine sacks and two fumble recoveries for Greencastle.

Ken Reid
Another Mid-Penn Capital first-teamer had 65 tackles and 11 sacks.

Alex Akers
Smithsburg's two-time All-Area pick was Washington County's Defensive Player of the Year. Had 120 tackles, including 23 for losses, and four sacks.

Jordan Fields
Martinsburg's leading tackler had 91 tackles, including nine for losses, and four sacks.

Dillon Lechliter
Berkeley Springs senior topped 100 tackles for the second straight season, finishing the year with 139 total tackles, including 106 solos.

Greg Pheabus
North Hagerstown junior had 121 tackles, including a school-record 22 for losses, and six sacks.

Seth Poffenberger
A first-team all-conference and all-county selection, the Boonsboro senior had six interceptions. Also produced as a wide receiver with 18 catches for 438 yards and six touchdowns.

Jesse Hanes
Musselman junior led the Tri-State area with seven interceptions.

Seth Shindle
The Mid-Penn Capital defensive MVP had 78 tackles and five pass knockdowns for Greencastle.

Dewey McDonald
Jefferson's Two-time All-Area selection had four interceptions.

Erik Jacobs
Chambersburg senior was 6-for-10 in field goals with all of his misses coming from outside 42 yards. Hit a school-record 47-yard field goal.

Mike Russ
St. James senior threw for 2,173 yards and 15 touchdowns and made a defensive impact by switching from defensive back to linebacker.

All-Area Defense Second Team
Defensive Line:
Jeb Slick, Smithsburg; Broc Kline, Boonsboro; Jared Weatherholtz, Musselman; Curtis Feight, Mercersburg Academy; Mo Adams, Hedgesville
Linebacker: John Moser, South Hagerstown; Tim Oden, Jefferson; John Spoffard, Washington; Nick Harvey, Hancock; Alex Buterbaugh, James Buchanan
Defensive Back: Jon Arndt, Martinsburg; Cortez Boyce, Williamsport; Cody Snavely, Boonsboro; Alec Nelson, North Hagerstown; Alex Spielman, Berkeley Springs
Punter: Mike Wallace, Berkeley Springs
Utility: Jesse Smartt, James Buchanan; Brandon Hyler, Jefferson

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