Alexander Central’s Chapman tops on defense;
Hickory kicker Boston wins Special Teams award
A player who had an impact in multiple roles this season for Watauga High has been named the Northwestern 3A-4A football player of the year.
The All-Northwestern 3A-4A team — released Saturday with 63 players picked — is led by Jackson Greene, a 5-foot-11, 185 pound senior who played quarterback for the Pioneers early in the season when their starting quarterback was injured in the opening game and sat out the next five games.
Greene, who also plays free safety on defense, moved to quarterback when Anderson Castle was hurt early in the first game of the season. When Castle returned about six weeks later, Greene began to play other roles and helped the Pioneers win a conference title.
Unofficially, Greene finished the season 56 carries for 661 yards and six rushing touchdowns, caught three passes for 89 yards and two TDs and completed 25 of 43 passes for 611 yards and seven TDs (1,361 yards of total offense).
Watauga — finishing 13-1 after a third-round state 3AA 42-14 home loss to Weddington on Friday night — led the all-league picks with 14 selections.
Conference head coaches voted Freedom quarterback Jayden Birchfield as the Offensive Player of the Year, Alexander Central’s Isaac Chapman as the Defensive Player of the Year, Hickory’s Harrison Boston as the Special Teams Player of the Year and Coach of the Year went to Watauga’s Ryan Habich.
Birchfield’s unofficial season totals include 88 rushes for 417 yards and 15 scores and he completed 168 of 272 passes for 2,733 yards with 27 TDs and seven interceptions, leading Freedom to a 9-3 record. He is a junior.
Chapman, a senior defensive tackle, paced Alexander Central to a 9-3 record as a defense force with official season totals of 26 tackles, 32 assists with 23 hits for lost yardage of 93 yards, nine sacks, three forced fumbles and a blocked kick.
Boston, a senior, helped Hickory go 5-6 with 58 kicking points – 34 extra points and eight field goals with his longest 46 yards against Statesville and 45 yards against Watauga.
Habich completed his sixth season at Watauga with the Pioneers’ first league outright league title since 1980 and first crown since a share of the Northwestern 4A title in 2007.
ALL-NORTHWESTERN 3A-4A FOOTBALL
(as selected by conference head coaches)
Alexander Central (10): Jaden Houston, A.J. Miller, Marterion Howell, Lucas Walker, Tray Lackey, Isaac Chapman, Josh Miller, Tevin Clark, Jordan Brown, Nick McNeely
Freedom (12): Jayden Birchfield, Day Day Burgess, Desmond Caldwell, Austin Lowery, Day Day Roddy, Jee Hardy, C.J. Hayden, Jacob Dembski, Kevin Hover, James Boyd, Damien Dula, Cam Silvers
Hickory (9): Bryce Stober, Jaylyn Harper, Greyson Linebarger, Davis Amos, Cody Young, Harrison Boston, Malcom Eley, Zae Huitt, Tristan Rankin
McDowell (4): Adam Randolph, Andruw Randolph, J.C. Olivio, Andrew Davis
St. Stephens (8): Zach Lee, Salvador Gilvaja, Jordan Bolling, Chance Benfield, Nathaniel Vera, Zavian King, Luis Ugalde, Blake Baker
South Caldwell (4): Samuel Craig, Spencer Piercy, Trever Johnson, Austin Raynor
Watauga (14): Kyran Densham, Zach West, Jake Watson, Eli Suggs, Anderson Castle, Bryce Satterfield, Sterling Sauls, Jaiden Bond, Jackson Greene, Ben Critcher, Grant Oliver, Eli Bentley, Sam Sappington, Braeden Myers
West Caldwell (2): Isaiah Helms, Spencer Hadley
Offensive Player of the Year: Jayden Birchfield, Freedom
Defensive Player of the Year: Isaac Chapman, Alexander Central
Special Teams Player of the Year: Harrison Boston, Hickory
Player of the Year: Jackson Greene, Watauga
Coach of the Year: Ryan Habich, Watauga