MOUNT VERNON — Danville senior Heath Buckingham has another award to add to his expanding list of accolades.
Buckingham has been named the All-Area Offensive Player of the Year by the Mount Vernon News sports writers and editors.
Already named to the First Team All-Central District, Buckingham established an all-time career mark in rushing yards at Danville in Week 9 this season. Buckingham’s 1,057 regular-season rushing yards led the area in 2011, averaging 6.3 yards per carry. He also caught 10 passes for 171 yards. Buckingham led the area in scoring as well, with 122 points.
The All-Area First Team on offense includes quarterback Tyler Stoyle of Centerburg. Stoyle led the area in passing efficiency (164.0). The sophomore’s completion percentage of 68.2 percent (118-for-173) also led the area. Leading the Trojans in a west-coast style offense, Stoyle threw for 13 touchdowns and just four interceptions. He finished the year with 1,557 passing yards.
Fredericktown’s Matt Smith, Highland’s Hayden Mailey and Centerburg’s Jason Ratliff are the All-Area First Team running backs. Smith once again powered the Freddies’ offensive attack with 913 yards on 160 carries. With injuries hampering the Scots’ passing attack, Mailey became the primary offensive threat for his team, ending the year with 996 rushing yards. Ratliff adapted to the new Trojan offense well, finishing the season with 1,022 rushing yards.
A pair of Centerburg receivers also earned First Team honors. Logan McGovern had 66 catches for 778 yards, leading the area in both categories and earning him First Team All-Central District honors. Teammate Caleb White had 36 catches for 662 yards. They are joined on the First Team by Fredericktown’s Nash Cunningham, a dangerous receiver who caught 48 passes on the year.
The All-Area First Team offensive line includes Mount Vernon’s Ceth Miller, Danville’s Jamarcus Hershberger and Kyle Shultz, Centerburg’s Jacob Sutton and Fredericktown’s Josh Neff.
Brett Sockman’s near-perfect performance as kicker for the Centerburg Trojans earned him a First Team selection as well.
On the defensive side, Cody McGuire earned the All-Area Defensive Player of the Year award. Fredericktown coach Brian Baum referred to McGuire as “our team MVP.” He played like one, leading the area with 108 total tackles (nine for loss), two sacks and two fumble recoveries. McGuire appeared to be involved in nearly every defensive play — if he wasn’t getting the tackle, he was soaking up blockers so someone else could.
Quinton Ferenbaugh of Danville earned First Team All-Area honors at linebacker. Ferenbaugh was a true shut-down defender; he had just three interceptions, but he deflected several passes, and his ability to take away the opponent’s main weapon allowed teammates to make more plays. Ferenbaugh also had four sacks and was named Division VI Central District Defensive Player of the Year. He was the leader in one of the most dominating defenses seen in the area in years — the Blue Devils allowed seven or fewer points five times in 2011.
Ferenbaugh is joined in the linebacker position by East Knox’s Dalton Dennis, who forced a number of turnovers against even the toughest opponents. Highland’s Michael Halpon is also named First Team All-Area, as is Mount Vernon’s Matt Lybarger.
Bradley Fenton, who led the Yellow Jackets on defense, is named All-Area First Team in the secondary. Like Ferenbaugh, Fenton could make plays with a timely interception and a big return. Fenton is joined by Centerburg’s Chase Cochran, who had five interceptions, and Danville’s Bryce Staats, who led the area with seven. Staats’ teammate, Cody Inverso, is also named First Team All-Area in the secondary.
Danville’s Colton Moore is All-Area First Team up front. For the second straight year, Moore led the Blue Devils in fumble recoveries (four), one of which went for a touchdown. He also had 5 1/2 sacks, second in the area.
Moore is joined by Centerburg’s Dillon Eppich and Brock Cutlip, as well as Mount Vernon’s Tommy Queen.
East Knox’s Tyler Berger, who led the area with a 32.5 yard average, is the All-Area Punter of the Year.
All-Area Honorable Mention awards go to Centerburg’s Justin Keys and Dylan Craker; Danville’s Derek Baker, Marcus Durbin, Cody McCombs and Andy Payne; East Knox’s Dylan Wears, Jordan Moore and Alex Casebolt; Fredericktown’s Maeson Helton, Joey Burns and Joey Dunn; Highland’s Shawn Beltz and Colton Stanley; Mount Vernon’s Shawn Maxwell, A.J. Smith, Leevi Stump and Matt Lybarger; and Utica’s Ben Hays, Artie Douglas, Brett Robberts, Travis Baldwin and Sam Preston.
For leading the Centerburg Trojans to an 8-2 record by installing a new offense and placing a positive mindset on his players, Jim Stoyle is our All-Area Coach of the Year.