The Austintown Fitch and Western Reserve high school football teams are well-represented on the 2013 Associated Press Northeastern Inland All-District teams, as selected by a media panel from within the district.
For Fitch, running back Darrin Hall earned Division I Offensive Player of the Year and coach Phil Annarella was named Coach of the Year after leading the Falcons to a perfect regular season.
The Falcons will play Lakewood St. Edward on Saturday in a regional final game at the University of Akron’s InfoCision Stadium.
Hall, a junior, rushed for 1,293 yards and scored 11 touchdowns. He averaged more than six yards per carry. He is a highly sought-after Division I college prospect.
Falcons lineman Chuck Zaborsky also was named to the first-team offense. On defense, Ryan Sayers and Sam Ortz were named to the first team.
Antwan Harris was a second-team honoree at quarterback. Tyler Hewlett. Gary Gibson, Tony Behanna and Kerrell Johnson were honorable mention on defense.
For Western Reserve, quarterback Nick Allison and linebacker Dan Zilke were named Division VII Offensive and Defensive Players of the Year, respectively. Those seniors have led the Blue Devils to a 12-0 record and regional final date with Norwalk St. Paul on Saturday in Medina.
Allison passed for more than 2,000 yards with 20 touchdowns and only two interceptions.
Zilke made 85 tackles, 10 sacks, six tackles-for-loss and assisted on 38 more tackles. On offense, he ran for 938 yards and scored 15 touchdowns.
In Division VI, South Range junior Joe Alessi was named Offensive Player of the Year. The 5-foot-9 175-pound running back gained 1,380 yards on the ground and scored 22 touchdowns. He averaged more than 11 yards per carry.
Several other area athletes were named to first-team honors. In Division I, Warren Harding running back Keemari Murray and teammate Keith Adams, at linebacker, were honored.
In Division III, honorees are: Niles’ Kyle Paden and Josh Krok; Hubbard’s L.J. Scott, Darnell Tate and Matt Jones; Canfield’s Kimu Kim; and Poland’s Ross Gould and Adam Wollett.
Division IV first-team players include: Jake Pishotti and Angelo Marino, Lakeview; Nick Bilas, Denver Martin, Zak Kennedy, Jordan Jones and Marc Handel, Cardinal Mooney; and Luke Witkowski and Nick Pollifrone, Struthers. In Division V, the first-team players include Liberty freshman running back Lynn Bowden, Ursuline senior Sha’Haun Williams and Crestview quarterback Collin Gilbert.