Liberty's Toussaint named player of the year
Vindicator staff/wire reports
COLUMBUS — Liberty senior Fitzgerald Toussaint, whose electrifying season lifted the Leopards into the playoffs, was named the co-offensive player of the year in Division III on Monday.
Toussaint, a University of Michigan recruit, rushed for 2,229 yards (10.4 per carry) and 28 TDs for Liberty (8-3), which lost in the first round of the postseason. He shared the award with Licking Valley senior running back Storm Klein, who one of the favorites for Mr. Football.
Toussaint (5-10, 195) was joined on the All-Ohio first team by teammate and fellow Michigan recruit Isaiah Bell (6-2, 215, Sr.), who was chosen as a defensive back, and Niles senior kicker Nick Liste.
Poland junior defensive back Luke Wollet made second team, while teammates Gannon Hulea and Greg Sabol earned special mention. Nick Kohuth of Lakeview also made special mention.
In Division II, Howland senior lineman Clay Cooper (6-4, 275) was a first team choice. Senior linebacker Tyler Scott, a Northwestern University recruit, made second team.
Earning special mention were Canfield’s Dom Rich and East’s RonCarlos Hilton.
In Division I, Boardman senior Corey Linsley, an Ohio State recruit, made second team and teammate Pat McFall was special mention. Fitch senior Sylvestry Gibbs also made special mention.
Divisions IV-VI will be announced today along with Mr. Football. The players and coaches of the year were selected based on the recommendations of a state media panel.
Cincinnati Elder’s Mark Miller and Andrew Holland of Cleveland St. Ignatius, who will play in Saturday’s 7 p.m. Division I championship game, shared offensive player of the year honors with North Canton Hoover running back Erick Howard.
The Division I defensive players of the year were Pickerington Central linebacker Zach Boren, along with linemen Pat Muldoon of Cincinnati St. Xavier and Ben Pike of Mentor. The coach of the year was Hoover’s Don Hertler.
Sharing the offensive honors in Division II were Holland Springfield QB Eric Page (1,102 passing yards, 2,381 rushing yards, 34 total TDs) and Louisville QB Neal Seaman (65 percent completion rate, 15 passing TDs and just 2 interceptions). The defensive player of the year was LB Josh Kusan of Columbus DeSales (14 tackles for loss, six sacks, more than 1,000 yards rushing). The coaches of the year are DeSales’ Ryan Wiggins, Mayfield’s Larry Pinto, Louisville’s Paul Farrah and Jim Mayzes, who leads Sylvania Southview in the state championship game against Cincinnati Anderson on Friday night.
The coach of the year in Division III was Scott Bartholomew of Circleville Logan Elm, who took over an 0-10 team that not only went 10-0 but also won its first two playoff games before falling.
The defensive honorees were all backs: Columbus Bexley’s Seth White (2 interceptions on defense, 1,303 yards rushing as a QB), Bobby Spence of Rayland Buckeye Local (11 interceptions) and Ethan Kagy of Tiffin Columbian (2 interceptions, 20 total TDs as a QB).