Tier 1 football all-stars: Hunter, Bechkos, Howe MVPs
A.N Myer’s Chris Bechkos (57), shown making a tackle in the Niagara championship game versus Notre Dame, was named the co-winner of the Tier 1 football league’s defensive MVP award. Photo by WILLIAM VANDERLAND.
A.N. Myer’s Trent Hunter, a slotback and a returner, has been named the offensive MVP of the Niagara Region High School Athletic Association’s Tier 1 senior football league.
“He’s a great athlete and he’s the type of kid that can do a lot of things well,” A.N. Myer head coach Dave Buchanan said. “He’s never played travel football, has grown through our system and has become a really good receiver.
“He catches the ball well in traffic, he returns the ball well and he is pretty much fearless.”
Myer also tried Hunter at Sam linebacker and he did a solid job at that position.
Teammates Zach Ayotte, a lineman, and quarterback Willy Jackman finished second in the voting. Other players receiving offensive MVP nominations were Greater Fort Erie quarterback Campbell Laroche, Myer slotback/safety/returner Mateo Corritore and Sir Winston Churchill returner/receiver Noah Dommasch.
Tying for defensive MVP honours were A.N. Myer middle linebacker Chris Bechkos and Greater Fort Erie defensive tackle Colin Howe.
Buchanan describes Bechkos, a Grade 12 student who doesn’t play travel football, as a smart player.
“He works hard, he quicks to the ball and he reads the plays well despite his lack of football experience,” he said. “He is being recruited to a couple of different schools and has a lot of upside.”
Greater Fort Erie head coach Dave Sauer says Howe is an intense player with no quit.
“At practice, he raises our intensity and that will have to be replaced. When he crosses the white lines on the field, he brings it every play,” he said. “His drive and strength forced offences to deal with him and allowed other players to flourish, especially on our defensive line.”
Howe has signed with St. Francis Xavier and Sauer expects him to tackle university ball with the same intensity.
“He was a leader for us at practice and games and he always was on board with what we wanted to do,” Sauer said. “He is a great athlete for his size and has put great work in the weight room. That combo made him tough for teams to deal with.”
Other players nominated for the defensive MVP award were defensive lineman Ayotte and Sir Winston Churchill defensive back Josh Morley.
Named to the BPSN all-star squad from the champion A.N. Myer Marauders were: quarterback Jackman; running back Jordan Gilbert; halfback Ethan Carmichael; slotback/returner Hunter; wide receiver/punter Winfield Organ; cornerback Jorge Rodriquez; linebacker Bechkos; offensive and defensive linemen Ayotte and Jacob Iudiciani; offensive lineman Mackenzie Messina; and, slotback/safety/returner Corritore.
Selected to the BPSN all-star team from the championship finalist Sir Winston Churchill Bulldogs were: wide receiver/defensive back Morley; returner/receiver Dommasch; quarterback Ryan Cormier; linebacker/slotback Curtis Neilson; defensive back/receiver Aidan Cook; and, linebacker/receiver Moses Lougheed.
BPSN All-star selections from the Greater Fort Erie Gryphons were: linebackers Gavin Sauer and Kai Gerritsen; defensive back Rylan Docker; wide receiver/defensive back Dave Stewart; quarterback Laroche; offensive and defensive tackle Erik Timbers; offensive guard/defensive tackle Howe; wide receiver/slotback Braden Eder; and, running back/linebacker Keegan Mitchell.
Chosen to the BPSN all-star team from the Westlane Spartans were: offensive and defensive lineman Ty Bennett; offensive lineman/linebacker Josh Bigelow; linebacker/slotback Owen Durand; free safety Jeff Vujovic; linebacker John Smith; and, fullback/linebacker Connor Miller.
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