Fall 2021 Northwest Herald All-Area Football team

First-team offense

Crystal Lake Central's Colton Madura

QB-Colton Madura, Crystal Lake Central, sr.

Madura (5-10, 185) was voted as the Fox Valley Conference Offensive Player of the Year and was an Illinois High School Football Coaches Association Class 6A All-State selection after leading the Tigers to an 8-4 record. He ran for 962 yards and 14 touchdowns and threw for 1,846 yards and 20 touchdowns, while completing 65.2% of his passes. Madura put up those numbers while missing most of three games with a hip injury.

Cary-Grove's Jameson Sheehan

QB/RB–Jameson Sheehan, Cary-Grove, sr.

Sheehan (6-3, 190) was runner-up to Madura for FVC Offensive Player of the Year and an IHSFCA Class 6A All-State selection. Sheehan commanded the Trojans’ triple-option masterfully, rushing for 834 yards and 14 touchdowns, while throwing for 933 with 13 touchdowns and one interception. He ran for 99 yards and three touchdowns in C-G’s 37-36 win over East St. Louis for the Class 6A state championship. He is considering an offer from NCAA Division I The Citadel.

Cary-Grove's Nick Hissong

RB–Nick Hissong, Cary-Grove, sr.

Hissong (6-1, 210) was a punishing runner at fullback in the Trojans’ triple-option attack. He finished second in area rushing with 1,717 yards, the last 224 of which came in the Trojans’ 37-36 victory over East St. Louis for the Class 6A state championship. Hissong rushed for 30 touchdowns and had an 8.7-yard average. Hissong carried 32 times in the title game. On the last carry he suffered a torn right ACL. He is a repeat first-team selection from the spring season.

Jacobs' Ben Ludlum

RB–Ben Ludlum, Jacobs, sr.

Ludlum (5-10, 180) led the area in rushing for most of the season and ended as No. 1 with 1,732 yards and 25 touchdowns. When the Golden Eagles lost to Prospect in their Class 7A quarterfinal game it was the only time all season Ludlum did not reach 100 yards. He is a repeat first-team selection from the spring season.

WR–Christian Bentancur, Marian Central, so.

Bentancur led the area in receiving yardage (1,020) and touchdowns (11) despite missing one game. He caught 49 passes and averaged 20.8 per catch for the Hurricanes, who finished 4-5 and won the CCL/ESCC Red Division with a 2-0 record. Bentancur is a repeat first-team selection.

WR–Kyle Kaempf, McHenry, sr.

Kaempf (6-1, 160) made the All-Area first team in the spring at defensive back and now is picked as an offensive player. He caught 57 passes for 935 yards and eight touchdowns, leading the Warriors in scoring. McHenry was 1-8, but the Warriors kept many of their losses close and Kaempf was a big reason. He had two interceptions on defense, one he returned for a touchdown.

OL–Luke Dalton, Marian Central, sr.

Dalton (6-5, 300) is a repeat first-team selection after helping the Hurricanes’ offense to the CCL/ESCC Red Division title. Dalton, a three-year starter, played on both lines and was an IHSFCA Class 4A All-Stater. He will play at Cincinnati next season.

Cary-Grove's Zach Petko

OL–Zach Petko, Cary-Grove, sr.

Petko (6-1, 214) was an IHSFCA Class 6A All-State selection for the Class 6A state champions and was a star on both sides. On offense, he helped an offense that averaged more than 400 yards rushing per game and scored 45 points a game. At linebacker, he racked up 94 tackles. Petko got a hold of East St. Louis quarterback Robert Battle late in the title game and helped force the game-sealing interception.

Prairie Ridge's Jack Schnoor

OL–Jack Schnoor, Prairie Ridge, sr.

Schnoor (6-3, 280) was an IHSFCA Class 6A All-State choice and is a repeat All-Area first-team pick. Schnoor was named the FVC Lineman of the Year by the coaches. He rarely left the field, helping the high-powered Wolves’ triple-option on the offensive line and also playing a huge part on the defensive line. He will play at NCAA Division II Minnesota State.

Jacobs' Will Seibert

OL–Will Seibert, Jacobs, jr.

Seibert (6-3, 240) helped lead the Golden Eagles’ potent rushing attack that produced the area’s Nos. 1 and 4 rushers. Jacobs gained 4,690 yards for the season. He was also a defensive standout with 32 tackles, seven tackles for losses and three sacks. He was third in the FVC coaches’ voting for Lineman of the Year, behind Schnoor and Petko.

Johnsburg's Jacob Welch

OL–Jacob Welch, Johnsburg, jr.

Welch (6-6, 290) was an IHSFCA Class 4A All-Stater in his third season as a starter for the Skyhawks. Welch was credited with 58 pancake blocks and Johnsburg coach Sam Lesniak felt he was the best lineman on the field in most of the Skyhawks’ games. He has a D-I offer from Central Michigan and likely will have more to come.

Crystal Lake South's Kevin Landa

K-P–Kevin Landa, Crystal Lake South, sr.

Landa (5-9, 190) hit 6-of-7 field goals this season, capping his career with a 50-yarder in the Gators’ Class 6A playoff loss to Harlem. Landa booted a 40-yarder earlier in that game. Gators coach Rob Fontana took one field goal off the board this season when he accepted a penalty to go for a touchdown. Landa was 39 of 40 on extra points. He also is the first-team punter, where he averaged 36 yards a kick.

First-team defense

DB–Landon Jacoby, Richmond-Burton, sr.

Jacoby (5-9, 155) was a playmaker on both sides for the Rockets, who made their third consecutive Class 4A semifinal. Jacoby had five interceptions, two forced fumbles and one recovery. On offense, from the wingback position he had 391 yards rushing and 314 receiving with a total of eight touchdowns.

Cary-Grove's Toby Splitt

DB–Toby Splitt, Cary-Grove, sr.

Splitt (5-11, 179) did a little bit of everything for the Class 6A state champs, playing defensive back, placekicking, returning punts and he spent some time at running back late in the season. He had 86 tackles and three interceptions, returned one punt for a touchdown and kicked 69-of-74 extra points. One of his best plays was a perfectly executed onside kick in the Class 6A state championship game, C-G’s 37-36 win over East St. Louis, where he tapped the ball and recovered it himself.

Prairie Ridge's Mason Loucks

DB–Mason Loucks, Prairie Ridge, sr.

Loucks (5-7, 150) played both ways for the Wolves late in the season and made an impact at his usual position, defensive back, with some big plays and a pick-six against Vernon Hills in the Class 6A playoff opener. But Loucks was invaluable on offense when he stepped in just before the season started for injured Tyler Vasey at quarterback and ran the triple-option offense. Loucks rushed for 921 yards and 14 touchdowns while helping the Wolves to the quarterfinals and a 9-3 record.

Crystal Lake South's Michael Prokos

DB–Michael Prokos, Crystal Lake South, so.

Prokos (6-0, 170) made an impact on both sides for the Gators, playing defensive back and wide receiver and rarely coming off the field. He had 58 tackles and three interceptions on defense, with one forced fumble. At wide receiver he was second in the area with 54 receptions for 916 yards and four touchdowns.

Burlington Central's Gavin Sarvis

LB–Gavin Sarvis, Burlington Central, sr.

Sarvis (6-1, 195) was an IHSFCA Class 5A All-Stater and voted by coaches as FVC Defensive Player of the Year. He led the Rockets with 93 tackles, 14 tackles for losses, two interceptions, two forced fumbles and five sacks. Sarvis also was the Rockets’ leader on offense with 640 rushing yards and eight touchdowns. He is a first-team repeat selection.

Richmond-Burton's Brock Wood

LB–Brock Wood, Richmond-Burton, sr.

Wood (6-1, 210) is the Northwest Herald Player of the Year, picking up the honor his brother Dalton won in 2019 after the Rockets won the 2019 Class 4A state title. Wood led the Rockets with 126 tackles, one interception and 15 tackles for losses. He also rushed for 1,658 yards and 27 touchdowns. Wood suffered a broken left thumb in the Rockets’ semifinal game against Joliet Catholic and still played all the way on both sides. He is an IHSFCA Class 4A All-Stater and a repeat All-Area first-team selection.

Cary-Grove's Colin Desmet

LB–Colin Desmet, Cary-Grove, jr.

Desmet (5-8, 166) led the Trojans with 130 tackles and had four interceptions on a defense that rarely surrendered points. Among the 184 points before the Class 6A title game against East St. Louis, most came against C-G’s No. 2 defense. The Trojans’ first-team defense allowed one touchdown in their first four playoff games. Desmet had 13 tackles and one forced fumble in the championship game.

Richmond-Burton's Brock Wood

LB-Shane Moran, Crystal Lake South, sr.

Moran (5-10, 165) was a three-year starter and an IFCHSA Class 6A honorable-mention All-State selection after recording 119 tackles, four sacks, four tackles for losses, two interceptions, two forced fumbles and three fumble recoveries. He also blocked three kicks. Gators coach Rob Fontana said he was the focal point of the defense for the last three years and a three-time All-FVC player.

Woodstock's Gavin Loiselle

DL–Gavin Loiselle, Woodstock, sr.

Loiselle (6-3, 235) was a three-year starter on both lines for the Blue Streaks and was an IHSFCA Class 5A honorable-mention All-Stater. He had three sacks, but did not have huge defensive statistics, because Streaks coach Mike Brasile said he was constantly taking on double teams. He led the Woodstock offensive line with numerous pancake blocks. He also was an Academic All-State pick.

Huntley's Chet Andrews

DL–Chet Andrews, Huntley, sr.

Andrews (6-5, 210) is a career basketball player who took up football for this one season and was a huge part of the Red Raiders’ defense, leading the area with 12 sacks. Huntley finished 3-6, but still had one of the best defenses in the FVC.

Cary-Grove Wade Abrams

DL–Wade Abrams, Cary-Grove, sr.

Abrams (6-0, 200) played a lot of defense for the Trojans, who won the Class 6A state title. He had 30 tackles and five sacks, including one crucial sack of East St. Louis quarterback Robert Battle in the championship game. Abrams was a big-play running back as well, running for 696 yards and eight touchdowns and catching five passes for two touchdowns. Abrams missed four games late in the season after taking a direct shot in practice to a thigh that almost became compartment syndrome. He made it back for the semifinal against Lake Forest and the title game.

Second-team offense

QB–Josh Holst, Marengo, jr.

RB–Nasir Canty, Jacobs, sr.

RB–Nate Van Witzenburg, Crystal Lake South, jr.

RB–Brent Blitek, Crystal Lake Central, sr.

TE–Grant Stec, Jacobs, so.

TE–Noah Riley, Cary-Grove, sr.

OL–Joe Volenec, Jacobs, sr.

OL–Max Katsenos, Cary-Grove, sr.

OL–Nate Compere, Crystal Lake South, jr.

OL–Buzz Macke, Crystal Lake Central, sr.

OL–Patryk Barnas, Hampshire, sr.

K/P–Mason Wojtas, Huntley, jr.

Second-team defense

DB–Ashton Niehaus, Jacobs, jr.

DB–Henry Kennedy, Dundee-Crown, jr.

DB–Nick Martino, Huntley, sr.

LB–Bailey Livdahl, Harvard, sr.

LB–Paulie Rudolph, Jacobs, so.

LB–Dillon Carlson, Crystal Lake Central, sr.

LB–Will Martin, Crystal Lake Central, sr.

LB-Joey Scrivani, Jacobs, so.

DL–Andy Burburija, Crystal Lake South, so.

DL–Steven Siegel, Richmond-Burton, jr.

DL–Luke Zunkel, McHenry, sr.

Honorable mention

Nico Acevedo, Crystal Lake Central, LB, sr.

Collin Aubry, Marengo, WR, jr.

Zach Bentsen, Prairie Ridge, RB, sr.

Antonio Brown, Jacobs, RB-LB, jr.

Daniel Chojnowski, Hampshire, LB, sr.

Luke Conroy, Johnsburg, QB, jr.

George Dimopoulos, Crystal Lake Central, WR, jr.

Tyler Fikis, Hampshire, QB, jr.

Allen Flores, Harvard, WR-LB, sr.

Eduardo Flores, Harvard, RB-LB, sr.

Matt Fryer, Prairie Ridge, LB, sr.

Nathan Greetham, Prairie Ridge, FB, jr.

Braydon Gibour, Crystal Lake Central, LB, sr.

Henry Goetz, Woodstock North, FB, sr.

Xander Gramarossa, Hampshire, LB, sr.

Jacob Gray, Richmond-Burton, OL-DL, jr.

Hunter Guyon, Dundee-Crown, TE-DL, sr.

Brody Hallin, McHenry, RB-LB, sr.

Jack Hayden, Marian Central, OL-DL, sr.

Brendan Hernon, Marian Central, QB, sr.

Andrew Hoffman, McHenry, QB, sr.

Gage Homola, Hampshire, TE-LB, so.

Nate Komar, Richmond-Burton, OL-DL, jr.

Justin Kowalak, Crystal Lake South, sr., QB

Cooper LePage, Crystal Lake South, WR, jr.

Bailey Livdahl, Harvard, RB, sr.

Drew Magel, Cary-Grove, RB, sr.

Nathan Majewski, Burlington Central, WR-DB, sr.

Dashaun Manning, Huntley, DB, jr.

Enzo Martinez, Richmond-Burton, OL, sr.

Jake Metze, Johnsburg, RB-DB, jr.

Joe Miller, Richmond-Burton, QB, jr.

Logan Miller, Marengo, WR-DB, jr.

James Muetterries, Burlington Central, OL-DL, jr.

Keegan Otte, Dundee-Crown, RB, jr.

Jason Penza, Crystal Lake Central, QB-WR-DB, so.

Jack Raymond, Woodstock, LB, jr.

Jack Schirmer, Marengo, sr., OL-DL, sr.

Sam Schultz, Prairie Ridge, OL-DL, sr.

Hunter Smith, Marengo, OL-LB, jr.

Stephen Tower, Richmond-Burton, LB, sr.

Justin Van Acker, Woodstock North, TE-DL, sr.

Tyler Vasey, Prairie Ridge, RB, jr.

Zach Vodraska, Hampshire, sr.

Liam Waco, Cary-Grove, DB, sr.

Nick Wojcik, Cary-Grove, DL, sr.

Devin Yeats, Hampshire, WR-LB, sr.

Joe Stevenson

Joe Stevenson

I have worked at the Northwest Herald since January of 1989, covering everything from high school to professional sports. I mainly cover high school sports now.